California-based Windsor Rosewood Care Center (WRCC), a skilled nursing facility, has agreed to provide people living with HIV/AIDS equal access to their facilities following discrimination compliant to the Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights (OCR) filed by the Contra Costa Legal Services Department.

The complaint was issued on behalf of an HIV-positive Medicaid beneficiary whom the facility denied admission based on his status. This was deemed a violation of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, a law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of a disability—including HIV—in programs or activities that receive federal funding.

“This Contra Costa County case should make it clear that we will not tolerate a nursing home denying admission to an individual solely because he is HIV positive,” said OCR director Georgina Verdugo. “The department is committed to ensuring access to health care for all Americans; and OCR will act diligently to eliminate unlawful discrimination in nursing homes and other health care settings.”

The settlement will also establish patient grievance procedures, which will notify patients of their right to file complaints. And WRCC staff will receive comprehensive HIV/AIDS training from the Pacific AIDS Education and Training Center.