Chapter 9. Mobile Health Care Units of California Health And Safety Code >> Division 2. >> Chapter 9.
This chapter shall be known, and may be cited as, the
Mobile Health Care Services Act.
As used in this chapter, the following definitions shall
(a) "Parent facility" means a health facility licensed pursuant to
Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 1250) of Division 2, or a clinic
licensed pursuant to Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 1200) of
(b) (1) "Mobile service unit" or "mobile unit" means a special
purpose commercial coach as defined in Section 18012.5, or a
commercial coach as defined in Section 18001.8, that provides
services as set forth in Section 1765.110, and meets any of the
(A) Is approved pursuant to this chapter by the state department
as a service of a licensed health facility, as defined in Section
(B) Is approved by the state department pursuant to this chapter
as a service of a licensed clinic, as defined in Section 1200.
(C) Is licensed pursuant to this chapter by the state department
as a clinic, as defined in Section 1200.
(D) Is licensed pursuant to this chapter as an "other" type of
approved mobile unit by the state department. "Other" types of
approved mobile units shall be limited to mobile units performing
services within new health facility or clinic licensure categories
created after the effective date of this chapter. The State
Department of Health Services shall not create a new health facility
or clinic licensure category under this subparagraph absent a
(2) "Mobile service unit" or "mobile unit" does not mean a
modular, relocatable, or transportable unit that is designed to be
placed on a foundation when it reaches its destination, nor does it
mean any entity that is exempt from licensure pursuant to Section
The purpose of this chapter is to provide for the use of
mobile units to provide medical, diagnostic, and treatment services,
in order to help ensure the availability of quality health care
services for patients who receive care in remote or underserved areas
and for patients who need specialized types of medical care provided
in a cost-effective way.
A mobile unit may operate as one of the following:
(a) As an adjunct to a licensed health facility or to a licensed
(b) As an independent-freestanding clinic pursuant to Chapter 1
(commencing with Section 1200).
(c) As an "other" type of approved mobile unit.
The state department shall charge applicants a licensure
fee as follows:
(a) Pursuant to Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 1200), or
Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 1250).
(b) Pursuant to the applicable section of the Health and Safety
Code that creates a new health facility or clinic licensure category.
(c) No additional licensure fee will be imposed solely because a
service is to be provided in a mobile unit.
Compliance with all of the following criteria shall be
required prior to licensure:
(a) The mobile unit shall comply with the applicable requirements
of the Vehicle Code, and shall have a vehicle identification number.
(b) The mobile unit shall bear an insignia issued by the
Department of Housing and Community Development pursuant to Section
(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), no person,
political subdivision of the state, or governmental agency shall
operate a mobile service unit without first obtaining a license or an
addition to existing licensure under this chapter unless exempt from
licensure under Section 1206.
(b) Any person, political subdivision of the state, or
governmental agency, that was operating a mobile unit as of January
1, 1994, may continue to operate the mobile unit only under the
(1) The person, political subdivision of the state, or
governmental agency shall apply to the state department for a mobile
unit license, or an addition to existing licensure, via a request for
licensure under this chapter by March 1, 1994.
(2) The person, political subdivision of the state, or
governmental agency shall cease operating the mobile unit upon a
final decision of the state department denying the application for
licensure or addition to licensure under this chapter.
(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, after the
initial licensure, or the initial approval of the addition to
existing licensure of a parent facility, to operate a mobile service
unit, the department shall not require that each site where the
mobile unit operates be licensed or approved by the department unless
the mobile unit will be operating outside of the proposed area or
areas specified in the application pursuant to paragraph (4) of
subdivision (b) of Section 1765.130.
(a) Any applicant under this chapter shall file with the
state department an application. The application shall be on forms
prescribed and furnished by the state department that shall contain
any information as may be required by the state department for the
proper administration and enforcement of this chapter.
(b) An applicant health facility or clinic pursuant to this
chapter shall submit an application to the licensing and
certification district office of the state department stating with
specificity all of the following:
(1) The proposed service to be provided.
(2) The expected hours and days of operation.
(3) The type and the manufacturer of the mobile unit contemplated.
(4) The proposed area or areas where the mobile unit will be
(c) An applicant for licensure as an independently licensed clinic
under this chapter shall submit a verified application to the state
department on the appropriate forms for the type of clinic for which
it wishes to obtain licensure.
(d) Prior to granting approval to an applicant parent facility for
operation of a mobile unit under the parent facility's existing
licensure pursuant to this chapter, or prior to granting license for
an independent mobile unit, the state department shall conduct an
onsite inspection, including, but not limited to, a review of
policies and procedures.
(e) Supplemental services offered via mobile units shall be listed
by the state department as an approved or supplemental service on
the license of the parent facility.
(f) Licenses issued by the state department authorizing operation
of a mobile unit as an addition to existing parent facility licensure
shall be posted at the parent facility. Licenses authorizing
operation of a clinic as a mobile unit shall be posted at the
administrative headquarters of the licensee. A true copy of the
license shall be posted within the mobile unit.
(a) To qualify for a license under this chapter, an
applicant shall satisfy all the requirements of this chapter, the
applicable requirements of Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 1200)
or of Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 1250) of Division 2, and all
(b) The applicant shall file a completed application with the
(a) Mobile units that provide services as an addition to
the existing license of a parent facility shall be subject to the
same requirements and regulations as the parent facility, except
that, instead of complying with the physical plant requirements
applicable to the parent facility, they shall comply with the mobile
unit requirements contained in this chapter.
(b) Clinics licensed as mobile units shall be subject to the same
requirements and regulations as any other clinic, except that,
instead of complying with the physical plant requirements applicable
to the clinic, the mobile unit shall comply with the mobile unit
requirements contained in this chapter.
(a) A licensee using mobile services pursuant to this
chapter shall, at the department's option, be periodically inspected,
in addition to any inspections required pursuant to the parent
facility licensure requirements, by a duly authorized representative
of the department. Reports of each inspection shall be prepared by
the representative conducting it upon forms prepared and furnished by
the department and filed with the department. The inspection shall
be for the purpose of ensuring that this chapter and the rules and
regulations of the department adopted under this chapter are being
(b) Any officer, employee, or agent of the department may enter
and inspect any building, premises, or vehicle and may have access to
and inspect any document, file, or other record, of a mobile unit or
of a parent facility operating a mobile unit, at any reasonable time
to assure compliance with, or to prevent violation of, this chapter.
(c) After the initial licensure, or the initial approval of the
addition to existing licensure of a parent facility, the mobile unit
shall be periodically reviewed for compliance. When approved as
additions to the existing licensure of a parent facility, reviews
shall be conducted as a part of the parent facility's regular
inspection. When the mobile unit is an independently licensed clinic,
it shall be reviewed in accordance with the licensing inspection
schedule for clinics.
(d) Demonstration of a mock emergency drill shall be observed by
department staff in the mobile unit on a site where patient mobility
(a) The mobile unit shall be of sufficient size and shall
be arranged in a manner that is appropriate for the provision of
those health care services that it is licensed to provide.
(b) The mobile unit shall be equipped with appropriate utilities
for the comfort and safety of patients. The Office of Statewide
Health Planning and Development shall review and approve
hospital-provided utility connections for mobile units that require
utility hookups with general acute care hospitals.
(c) The mobile unit shall be maintained in good repair and in a
clean and sanitary manner.
(d) All proposed modifications to previously approved services and
procedures shall be reviewed and approved by the state department
before they are implemented. Modifications to the mobile service unit
shall be approved by the Department of Housing and Community
Development pursuant to Section 18029.
(e) The licensee shall report to the department the location of
the site at least 24 hours prior to the operation of a mobile unit at
any site for the first time.
(f) Notification required by subdivision (e) shall be waived when
the mobile unit operates at any site for the first time at the
request of federal, state, or local authorities for the purposes of
responding to state or locally declared emergencies as defined in
subdivisions (a), (b), and (c) of Section 8558 of the Government
Code, federally declared emergencies, and declared public health
emergencies as defined in Section 101080 for the duration of the
(a) The licensed parent facility or clinic shall be
responsible for obtaining approvals for the site or sites of the
mobile unit as required by the local planning, zoning, and fire
(b) The mobile unit shall be situated for safe and comfortable
patient access. The mobile unit shall comply with all local parking
laws. Any parking restrictions developed by a parent facility or
clinic for mobile units shall be strictly enforced by the parent
facility or clinic.
(c) The parent facility or clinic shall ensure that there is
sufficient lighting around the perimeter of the site from which the
mobile unit provides any services.
Any licensee using mobile services pursuant to this
chapter shall do all of the following:
(a) Have written policies established by the governing body of the
licensee, to govern the services that the mobile unit provides. The
policies shall include, but shall not be limited to, policies related
to patient care, personnel training and orientation, personnel
supervision, and evaluation of services provided by the mobile unit.
(b) Have written policies regarding patient selection criteria.
(c) Develop and implement the written policies and procedures for
the mobile unit in consultation with other appropriate health care
(d) Ensure that the written policies and procedures are consistent
with the policies and procedures of the parent facility, if any.
(e) Ensure that the policies and written procedures shall be
approved by the governing body, administration, and medical staff of
the licensee, where appropriate.
(f) Ensure that the written policies and procedures include, but
are not limited to, all of the following:
(1) Scope of services.
(2) Procedures for the performance of the services provided.
(3) Quality assurance.
(4) Infection control.
(5) Medical record documentation of services provided, as
(6) Transport of patients, including, but not limited to, method,
special equipment, necessary personnel, and protection from inclement
(7) Emergency services and evacuation plan for the mobile unit.
(A) A licensee using mobile services pursuant to this chapter
shall specify in writing policies and procedures for emergencies
including fire, natural disaster, and medical emergencies. In its
policies and procedures, the mobile unit shall address the emergency
plan required of the parent facility and state how the plans shall be
(B) A licensee using mobile services pursuant to this chapter
shall familiarize its employees and each patient with the policies
and procedures adopted pursuant to subparagraph (A).
(C) A licensee using mobile services pursuant to this chapter
shall maintain written transfer agreements that shall include, but
shall not be limited to, provisions for communication with, and
transportation to, one or more nearby hospitals and other health
facilities as needed to meet medical emergencies. The mobile unit
shall develop procedures that include personnel needed to assist in
the transfer, as well as provisions for meeting medical needs to
accommodate the emergency transfer.
(9) Schedule of mobile unit services.
(g) Maintain clinical records on each patient, in accordance with
(h) Maintain a mobile unit services log that shall include, but
shall not be limited to, all of the following:
(1) Patient chart or identification number.
(2) Name, age, and sex of patient.
(3) Site, date, time, and as appropriate, duration of procedure.
(a) For general acute care hospitals, mobile unit
services shall not be utilized as a primary source for a basic
hospital service, as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 1250,
unless in response to a natural disaster or other emergency
(b) The mobile services provided in a mobile unit operated by a
parent facility shall be licensed to the parent facility, even though
it may be operated pursuant to a contract. When a contract of this
type exists with a licensed parent facility for the provision of
mobile unit services, all of the following shall apply:
(1) Mobile units shall be treated as part of the parent facility
for licensure purposes.
(2) Each parent facility shall document the designated service and
staff that have administrative responsibility for the mobile unit.
(3) The parent facility shall maintain the administrative and
professional responsibility for the mobile unit. All liabilities for
noncompliance regarding the provisions of services in the mobile unit
shall be that of the parent facility.
(4) Procedures and services to be provided in the mobile unit
shall be in accordance with recognized acceptable standards of
(5) Coordination with the owner of the mobile unit vehicle for
availability of the vehicle at the site for required inspections
shall be the responsibility of the parent facility.
The mobile unit shall comply with all of the following:
(a) It shall have supplies and equipment to meet the needs of the
(b) Any mobile unit X-ray equipment shall be in compliance with
the requirements in the California Radiation Control Regulations,
Title 17, California Code of Regulations.
(c) The mobile unit shall have fire safety equipment as specified
by the fire authority having jurisdiction, including but not limited
to, at least two fire extinguishers of 2A:20 BC rating.
(d) Documented evidence of preventative maintenance and
calibration procedures of mobile unit equipment shall conform to the
(e) Use of the equipment in mobile units shall conform to the
(f) The mobile unit shall have a telecommunications device.
The state department shall adopt, amend, or repeal, in
accordance with Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 11340) of Part 1
of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code, rules and
regulations as it determines may be necessary to carry out the
purposes and intent of this chapter and to enable the state
department to exercise the powers and perform the duties conferred
upon it by this chapter. Until the state department adopts
regulations relating to provision of services by a chronic
hemodialysis clinic, a surgery clinic, or a rehabilitation clinic,
mobile units licensed or seeking licensure, in these categories shall
comply with federal certification standards for end stage renal
disease clinics, ambulatory surgery clinics, or comprehensive
outpatient rehabilitation facilities, as applicable.