As used in ss. 430.201-430.207, the term:
(1) “Area agency on aging” means a public or nonprofit private agency or office designated by the department to coordinate and administer the department’s programs and to provide, through contracting agencies, services within a planning and service area. An area agency on aging serves as both the advocate and the visible focal point in its planning and service area to foster the development of comprehensive and coordinated service systems to serve older individuals.
(2) “Community care service area” means a service area within a planning and service area.
(3) “Community care service system” means a service network comprising a variety of home-delivered services, day care services, and other basic services, hereinafter referred to as “core services,” for functionally impaired elderly persons which are provided by or through a single lead agency. Its purpose is to provide a continuum of care encompassing a full range of preventive, maintenance, and restorative services for functionally impaired elderly persons.
(4) “Contracting agency” means an area agency on aging, a lead agency, or any other agency contracting to provide program administration or to provide services.
(5) “Core services” means a variety of home-delivered services, day care services, and other basic services that may be provided by several entities. Core services are those services that are most needed to prevent unnecessary institutionalization. The area agency on aging shall not directly provide core services.
(6) “Department” means the Department of Elderly Affairs.
(7) “Functionally impaired elderly person” means any person, 60 years of age or older, having physical or mental limitations that restrict individual ability to perform the normal activities of daily living and that impede individual capacity to live independently without the provision of core services. Functional impairment shall be determined through a functional assessment administered to each applicant for community-care-for-the-elderly core services. The functional assessment shall be developed by the department.
(8) “Health maintenance services” means those routine health services that are necessary to help maintain the health of a functionally impaired elderly person, but that are limited to medical therapeutic services, nonmedical prevention services, personal care services, home health aide services, home nursing services, and emergency response systems.
(9) “Lead agency” means an agency designated at least once every 6 years by an area agency on aging as the result of a competitive procurement conducted through a request for proposal. (a) The request for proposal must be developed by the area agency on aging and include requirements for the assurance of quality and cost-efficiency of services, minimum personnel standards, and employee benefits. The department shall adopt a rule creating a dispute resolution mechanism. The rule, which shall be adopted no later than August 1, 2009, and which all area agencies on aging shall be required to follow, shall create standards for a bid protest and a procedure for resolution. The dispute resolution mechanism established in the rule shall include a provision for a qualified, impartial decisionmaker who shall conduct a hearing to determine whether the area agency’s proposed action is contrary to the area agency’s governing statutes or rules or to the solicitation specifications. The standard of proof for the protestor shall be whether the area agency’s action was clearly erroneous, contrary to competition, arbitrary, or capricious. The dispute resolution mechanism shall also provide a mechanism for review of the decisionmaker’s determination by a qualified and impartial reviewer, if review is requested. The standards for the bid protest shall include:
1. A provision requiring notice of an area agency’s proposed contract award and a clear point of entry for any substantially affected entity to challenge the proposed award.
2. A provision for an automatic stay of the contract award process upon the filing of a bid protest that shall not be lifted until the protest is resolved.
3. Provisions permitting all substantially affected entities to have an opportunity to participate in the hearing, to conduct discovery, to obtain subpoenas compelling the appearance of witnesses, to present evidence and argument on all issues involved, to conduct cross-examination, to submit rebuttal evidence, and to submit proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law.
4. Provisions for expeditious resolution of the bid protest, including a requirement that once the area agency on aging refers a bid protest petition to the decisionmaker, a hearing shall be conducted within 30 days, unless that timeframe is waived by all parties.
(b) For any lead agency designation conducted prior to the effective date of this subsection that is the subject matter of litigation on the date on which this subsection becomes law, the litigants shall be entitled to proceed with discovery under the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure immediately upon the date on which this subsection becomes law, and the litigants shall further be entitled to participate in the bid protest procedures enacted by rule pursuant to this subsection.
(c) In each community care service system the lead agency must be given the authority and responsibility to coordinate some or all of the services, either directly or through subcontracts, for functionally impaired elderly persons. These services must include case management, homemaker and chore services, respite care, adult day care, personal care services, home-delivered meals, counseling, information and referral, and emergency home repair services. The lead agency must compile community care statistics and monitor, when applicable, subcontracts with agencies providing core services.
(10) “Personal care services” means services to assist with bathing, dressing, ambulation, housekeeping, supervision, emotional security, eating, supervision of self-administered medications, and assistance in securing health care from appropriate sources. Personal care services does not include medical services.
(11) “Planning and service area” means a geographic service area established by the department, in which the programs of the department are administered and services are delivered.
(12) “State Plan on Aging” means the service plan developed by the department which evaluates service needs of the elderly, identifies priority services and target client groups, provides for periodic evaluation of activities and services funded under the plan, and provides for administration of funds available through the federal Older Americans Act. The state plan on aging must be based upon area plans on aging developed by the area agencies on aging in order that the priorities and conditions of local communities are taken into consideration.