October is Long-Term Care Residents’ Rights Month

Published on October 05, 2021

Weld County Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program staff with BOCC

In honor and recognition of the hundreds of residents in both nursing homes and assisted living facilities throughout Weld County, the Board of County Commissioners has proclaimed October as Weld County Long-Term Care Residents’ Rights Month.

The Nursing Home Reform Law, passed in 1987, guarantees nursing home residents their individual rights, including but not limited to individualized care, respect, dignity, the right to visitation, the right to privacy, the right to complain, and the right to make independent choices. Residents who have made their home in long-term care facilities maintain their rights as U.S. citizens. Residents’ Rights Month raises awareness about these rights and pays tribute to the unique contributions of long-term residents. 

Residents’ Rights Month is an annual event held in October by the National Consumer Voice to honor and focus on awareness of dignity, respect, and the value of long-term care residents. The theme for this year’s Residents’ Rights Month — “Reclaiming My Rights, My Home, My Life” — acknowledges the impact of this past year on residents and highlights the need for residents’ rights to be recognized, recovered and reasserted.  

“Long-term Care Residents’ Rights Month is an opportunity to bring awareness to and celebrate the dignity, respect and rights of each resident,” explained Department of Human Services Director (DHS) Jamie Ulrich. “It is crucial that those living in long-term care are aware of their rights and feel empowered to use their voice to speak up.”

The Weld County Ombudsman Program through the Department of Human Services Area Agency on Aging (AAA) works to promote and protect the rights of individuals living in long-term care communities. This year they teamed up with the Larimer County Ombudsman Program to coordinate an art competition for those living in nursing homes or assisted living facilities. Winner for Weld County, Jon Davis (pictured above) was presented with a plaque from Weld County Ombudsman Supervisor Raegan Maldonado and will have his art displayed in front of each long-term care facility in Weld County with important facts on Residents’ Rights.

“Residents’ Rights are important because although someone makes a conscious effort to take care of themselves and their health and move into a long-term care facility, they still have their rights,” said Commissioner Coordinator for DHS Perry Buck. “Those rights don’t just disappear, and we want to remind residents that these communities are their home.”

Learn more about AAA’s services and programs by visiting www.weldaaa.org. For more information about residents’ rights, or for questions or concerns, contact Raegan Maldonado, Weld County Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program Supervisor, at (970) 400-6128 or rmaldonado@weldgov.com.

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