Governor Hobbs Directs DHS and APS to Investigate Heritage Village Response, Announces Health Care Facility Licensing Legislative Priorities

News Release

October 24, 2023

Phoenix, AZ – Today, Governor Katie Hobbs announced she is directing the Department of Health Services and the Department of Economic Security - Adult Protective Services to do a comprehensive investigation into the response to complaints at Heritage Village and where the State fell short. 

Additionally, she announced her administration’s priorities in the upcoming legislative session to strengthen accountability for health care institutions, including assisted living facilities. For several months the administration has been working diligently to develop comprehensive reforms that crack down on bad actors, protect patient care, and strengthens accountability, including:

  • Allow ADHS to increase fees and fines based on the severity of an infraction
  • Increase ADHS regulatory powers, including cracking down on license hopping, and empower the agency to revoke licenses for cause
  • Close inspection loopholes for facilities that are licensed by accreditation or have a previous deficiency free inspection
  • Implement robust licensure requirements for assisted living facilities
  • Invest in additional employees and legal support for ADHS
  • Increase regulation and certification of facilities advertising Alzheimer’s, memory, and dementia care 
  • Create a new, transparent quality rating system available to the general public for residential and nursing care institutions, which includes skilled nursing, assisted living, and long term care facilities, within the AZ Care Check system 

“These health care facilities lack true accountability,” said Governor Katie Hobbs. “The stories from Heritage Village and others are horrific and unacceptable. I am directing DHS and APS to immediately launch an investigation into the unacceptable response to complaints at Heritage Village. Additionally, my team has been hard at work developing a comprehensive package to address healthcare facility licensing. Over the coming weeks, we will be announcing a legislative package to ensure we are keeping Arizonans safe and bring accountability to a system that has lacked it for too long.”