New Georgia law requires FBI background check of nursing home employees

Georgia has strengthened the law on background checks for nursing home employees and owners who have routine resident contact or access to any of their personal information.

Effective on October 1, 2019, all owners, applicants and employees of long-term care facilities will be subjected to fingerprint and name background checks through the FBI’s database. Previously, state law required a name-only background check through a state database.

The group behind the push for the new law, the Georgia Council on Criminal Justice Reform, said the stricter laws of surrounding states left Georgia open to employing those from neighboring states with a checkered past.

The new law, officially titled the Georgia Long-Term Care Background Check Program, applies to not just nursing homes, but assisted living facilities, home health agencies, and private in-home providers.