The Long Term Care Ombudsman Program helps to improve the quality of life and the quality of care of residents living in long term care facilities. Routine visits are made to facilities to monitor conditions and address residents’ complaints.
The Long Term Care Ombudsman Program grew out of efforts to respond to widely reported concerns that our most frail and vulnerable citizens, those living in long term care facilities, were subject to abuse, neglect and substandard care. These residents also lacked the ability to exercise their rights, or voice complaints about their circumstances. The primary purpose of the Ombudsman Program is to identify, investigate, and resolve complaints made by, or on behalf of residents of long-term care facilities.
The Volunteer Ombudsman:
- Will make every reasonable effort to assist, advocate and intervene on behalf of the resident
- Respects the resident and the complainant’s confidentiality when investigating complaints
- Will focus complaint resolution on the residents’ wishes
- Educates residents, family, facility staff and the community regarding resident rights and various options of long term and assisted care
- Identifies problem issues related to resident’s quality of care
- Investigates and attempts to resolve complaints made by or on behalf of residents
- Advocates and empowers residents and or family members to speak up on behalf of themselves for change if needed
- Reports to authority agencies areas of abuse, neglect and exploitation
Long Term Care Ombudsman receive specialized training and are designated by the State Long Term Care Ombudsman. They routinely visit long term care facilities to provide residents with easy access to Ombudsman services, provide advocacy and mediation services in the long term care facilities and work to improve the quality of care and the quality of life of residents.