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Advocacy Month:

Meet the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program!

Ombudsman is a strange name for an important role. The Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program at the Area Agency on Aging-Five County provides advocacy services to residents of skilled nursing facilities and assisted living facilities throughout the five county area. Our team of local ombudsmen are trained and certified to respond to complaints and help resolve problems on behalf of residents, while upholding strict confidentiality standards. Because we are a resident-driven program, we can only advocate if we have permission from the resident or an authorized representative. We strive to maintain open communication with residents throughout the complaint resolution process to make sure we are upholding their wishes and working toward the goal of making a difference in their everyday life.

In addition to complaint resolution, your local Ombudsman program works to educate residents, facilities, and the public on resident’s rights. As you might already know, residents of long-term care facilities have rights. These rights are mandated by the Older Americans Act and include the right to dignity, the right to privacy, the right to information, and many more. A full list can be found in the Resident’s Bill of Rights.

While you may not be able to say our program name (and we don’t expect you to), we want you to know each of us by name. Your local Ombudsman Team is led by Kristina Raner, who has been with the program for five years and covers all five counties. Susan Swapp has been with the program for ten years and covers Beaver, Garfield, Iron, and Kane counties. Our newest team member, Lisa Anderson, has been with us for nearly two years and covers Washington County. If you or someone you know would like to find out more, please reach out to us via email or call 435-263-0489.

Want to learn more? Stop by our Facebook Page! Throughout the month, we will be highlighting the Ombudsman Program, Residents' Rights, as well as our community partners in advocacy, including Adult Protective Services, the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, and the Senior Medicare Patrol.

Join us in advocating for ourselves and others!

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