Welcome to the Office of State Long Term Care Ombudsman
What does an Ombudsman do?
Long-term care ombudsmen are advocates for residents of nursing homes, board and care homes and assisted living facilities. Ombudsmen provide information about how to find a facility and what to do to get quality care.
They are trained to resolve problems. If you want, the ombudsman can assist you with complaints. However, unless you give the ombudsman permission to share your concerns, these matters are kept confidential. Under the federal Older Americans Act, every state is required to have an Ombudsman Program that addresses complaints and advocates for improvements in the long-term care system.
- A Long-Term Care Ombudsman:
- Resolves complaints made by or for residents of long-term care facilities
- Educates consumers and long-term care providers about residents' rights and good care practices
- Promotes community involvement through volunteer opportunities
- Provides information to the public on nursing homes and other long-term care facilities and services, residents' rights and legislative and policy issues
- Advocates for residents' rights and quality care in nursing homes, personal care, residential care and other long- term care facilities
- Promotes the development of citizen organizations, family councils and resident councils
- Long-term care ombudsmen efforts are summarized in the National Ombudsman Reporting System to include the number of facilities visited, the types of complaints handled and the kinds of complaints filed with ombudsmen
What concerns can an Ombudsman address?
- Violation of residents' rights or dignity
- Physical, verbal or mental abuse, deprivation of services necessary to maintain residents' physical and mental health, or unreasonable confinement
- Poor quality of care, including inadequate personal hygiene and slow response to requests for assistance
- Improper transfer or discharge of patient
- Inappropriate use of chemical or physical restraints
- Any resident concern about quality of care or quality of life