October is National Long-Term Care Residents’ Rights Month, a time to acknowledge the contributions and sacrifices many long-term care residents have made to better our community and to call attention to the rights in long-term care facilities. This year’s theme-It’s All About Me: My Life, My Care, My Choices, was selected to call attention to respect and dignity to every resident.
By listening to the residents’ voices, we honor their lives and experiences as well as treat them with dignity and respect; staff and residents can enjoy relationships that enhance their day-to-day lives; and the long-term care facility can operate more effectively in its daily activities when based on and developed with consumer involvement. Many people care about residents- family members, citizen advocates, long-term care ombudsmen, facility staff and others. This care can be truly individualized and focused on each person’s needs and preferences.
Celebrate and acknowledge these rights by participating in Resident’s Rights Month events and calling on your elected officials and local facilities to show their support by attending or organizing activities.
During Residents’ Rights Month we recognize our local long term care ombudsmen staff and volunteers, who work daily to promote resident’s rights, assist residents with complaints and provide information to those who need to find a long-term care facility. In this area, the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program at Aging Matters serves 18 counties and 166 long-term care facilities.
If you would like to learn more about the Ombudsman Program or become an Ombudsman Volunteer, contact Jan McFerron, Region 2 Ombudsman Director or Emily Smith, Assistant Director, at 573-335-3331 or 1-800-392-8771.
Emily Smith, Region 2 Assistant Ombudsman Director