A principal function of the Ombudsman Program is to investigate and work to resolve complaints made by or on behalf of long-term care residents. In our complaint handling, ombudsmen respect resident and complainant confidentiality and focus complaint resolution on the resident’s stated wishes.
A complaint is defined as information regarding action, inaction, or decisions that may adversely affect the health, safety, welfare, or rights of residents which is brought to the attention of a long-term care ombudsman and to which the ombudsman responds in order to address the adverse effect on residents.
For detailed information on LTCO Complaint Processing during Fiscal Year 2019 view our Annual Report.
Working with and on behalf of residents, ombudsmen identify systemic issues that require change. For current updates view our Annual Report.
Information and Assistance
Ombudsmen provide consumers, family members, friends, and caregivers with information regarding admission, resident care, rights, relocation, abuse, and many other long-term care issues. To obtain information on Fiscal Year 2019 view our
Consultation to Facilities
Ombudsmen provide staff of long-term care facilities with consultations on resident rights, nursing home services and care, and many other long-term care subjects.
Routine Visits to Facilities
Ombudsmen regularly visit residents in long-term care facilities and observe conditions. Residents often present their concerns to ombudsmen during such visits.
For detailed information on LTCO Routine Visits to Facilities during Fiscal Year 2019 view our Annual Report.
Home Care Ombudsman
The Home Care Ombudsman serves as an independent voice and advocates for individuals participating in the Money Follows the Person (MFP) demonstration program in the community. The Home Care Ombudsman advocates on behalf of MFP participants to resolve complaints related to the MFP program, Medicaid waiver services and how these services are provided. For further information view HCO brochure
Community Outreach and Education
Ombudsmen educate the community on subjects including the rights of residents, the services of the Ombudsman Program, facility regulation and enforcement, resident care practices, and abuse. Ombudsmen make presentations to churches, classrooms, civic clubs, senior groups, public and private agencies, and other interested parties. In addition to presentations, ombudsmen provide information through professional newsletters, the news media, publications, and the world wide web. Click here to request a speaker or information.
For detailed information on LTCO Community Outreach and Education during Fiscal Year 2019 view our Annual Report.
Ombudsman Advisory Councils
Ombudsmen meet regularly with Advisory Councils to improve operations of the Ombudsman Program, discuss long-term care issues, and network in order to resolve identified problems.
For additional information on LTCO Advisory Councils during Fiscal Year 2019 view our Annual Report.
Ombudsmen work closely with social services, regulatory, advocacy, policy-making, law enforcement, and other organizations — all with the goal of improving the lives of Georgians needing long-term care.
Resident and Family Councils
Ombudsmen help residents and family members establish resident and family councils in nursing homes and larger personal care homes. We participate in resident and family council meetings as speakers, observers, and resource persons.
In-Service Education to Facility Staff
Ombudsmen train facility staff on topics such as the Ombudsman Program, residents’ rights, and abuse reporting. Click here to request an in-service.
State Office staff and community programs work together to manage volunteers. Certified “LTCO Volunteers” are trained to investigate and resolve complaints. “Volunteer Visitors” visit residents in coordination with the community program, but are not authorized to handle complaints. When Volunteer Visitors learn of complaints they request that a Certified Ombudsman contact the complainant to handle the investigation and resolution. To volunteer or for other information click here.