October has been designated as National Long-Term Care Residents’ Rights Month. This is a time to acknowledge the contributions and sacrifices many long-term care (LTC) residents have made to better our community. It also brings attention to the rights of residents in long-term care facilities.
During Residents’ Rights Month, the Area Agency on Aging of Deep East Texas recognizes our local long-term care ombudsman program staff and volunteers. They work daily to promote residents’ rights, assist residents with complaints and provide information to those who need to find a long-term care facility. In this area it serves twelve counties which have forty-one nursing facilities and eighteen assisted living facilities.
The theme for Residents’ Rights Month 2018 is “Speak Up: Know Your Rights and How to Use them.” The theme emphasizes the importance of residents being informed about their rights; being engaged partners in achieving quality care and quality of life; and feeling confident in speaking up about what is important to them.
As Deep East Texas Area Agency on Aging Ombudsman Program celebrates Residents’ Rights, we encourage community members to visit those they know in a long-term care facility, volunteer in a facility and participate in Residents’ Rights Month events. You could also inquire about becoming a volunteer long-term care ombudsman. Assistance and attention helps to ensure that the voices of long-term care residents do not go unheard and demonstrates to residents that they have not been forgotten. For more information on the Ombudsman Program, or to volunteer, contact Tonya Jackson, Managing Local Ombudsman at 1-800-256-6848 ext. 5326 or 409/384-5407 ext. 5326.
- Ezra McMullin is a content and social media producer at MSGPR and attends Angelina College. He unwinds after a long day by playing XBox, telling himself he'll just play one more level before bed.