Long Term Care Ombudsman

Long Term Care Ombudsman monitor the quality of care in nursing home facilities.

What is a Long Term Care Ombudsman and what are their job duties?

The Ombudsman Program serves as the advocate for residents in long term care facilities. Ombudsmen will investigate any complaint and will negotiate on the resident’s behalf to resolve the complaint to the resident’s satisfaction. It is the only program that is totally devoted to the concerns of facility residents.

The Long Term Care Ombudsman Program is governed by the federal Older Americans Act. The South Carolina Lt. Governor’s Office on Aging administers the statewide Long Term Care Ombudsman Program through ten regional offices located throughout the state. These programs are affiliated with Area Agencies on Aging and funded with federal, as well as state and local dollars. There is no charge for services provided by the Ombudsman Program.

  • Investigates and works to resolve problems or complaints affecting long term care residents.
  • Identifies problem areas in long- term care facilities and advocates or mediates for change.
  • Provides information about long-term care and related services.
  • Promotes resident, family, and community involvement in long- term care.
  • Educates the community about the needs of long-term care residents.
  • Coordinates efforts with other agencies concerned with long-term care.
  • Visits long-term care facilities to talk to residents and monitor conditions.
  • Educates facility staff about resident rights and other issues.
  • Residents’ rights
  • Quality of care
  • Abuse, neglect, and exploitation
  • Transfers and discharges

In addition to the Ombudsman staff, South Carolina’s Long Term Care Ombudsman Program also includes volunteers who are locally recruited and placed at a specific long term care facility. Studies have shown that almost 60 percent of residents in facilities never have visitors. Across the nation, one of the most common functions for volunteer ombudsmen is to make regular friendly visits to facilities. Volunteers take the time to talk with residents and help them resolve issues with the facility that they may not feel comfortable doing themselves.

For more information contact your Regional Ombudsman Office.