All three types of agencies -Home Health Care Agencies(medical care), Residential Service Agencies (non-medical help), and Nurse Referral Agencies - are regulated by the Office of Health Care Quality in the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
The OHCQ controls licenses for the three types of agencies. By licensing facilities, those businesses get the right to operate within the state.
Home health agencies require a certificate of need (CON) prior to licensure. Residential service agencies do not require CON approval.
Certification of a Home Health Agency means it is allowed to participate in Medicare and Medicaid programs. The state Office uses federal regulations -along with state regulations- to determine if an agency meets the minimum standards required for certification. Residential Service Agencies, which provide non-medical services- are not allowed to participate in the Medicare program.
The OHCQ is in charge of actions to correct violations of the rules. They can revoke licenses, issue fines and take other actions against health care facilities which are in violation.
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