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Connection matters with long-term care residents

Posted on 10/07/2020
Connection matters with long-term care residents

In continuing the tradition of recognizing the hundreds of residents in nursing homes and assisted living facilities throughout Weld County, October has been proclaimed Weld County Long-Term Care Residents’ Rights Month by the Board of County Commissioners.

Many things change as people age and move into the next phase of life. However, one important thing does not: When moving into long-term care facilities, people retain their human and civil rights, also known as residents’ rights. Residents’ rights are guaranteed by the federal Nursing Home Reform Law, which requires nursing homes to care for residents in a manner that promotes and enhances the quality of life of each resident, ensuring dignity, choice and self-determination.

In Weld County, the residents’ rights of more than 850 individuals living in nine nursing homes and more than 1,000 individuals residing in 29 assisted living facilities are promoted and protected by the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program through the Department of Human Services’ Area Agency on Aging (AAA).

“This year has been difficult with COVID-19, and it’s great to see these facilities and ombudsman coming together to advocate for long-term care,” said Commissioner Barbara Kirkmeyer, Coordinator for the Department of Human Services. “Residents’ Rights Month truly signifies what we stand for in Weld County — quality of life and connection for all residents at any stage of life.”

Nationally, October is annually designated as Residents’ Rights Month by Consumer Voice to honor residents living in long-term care facilities. The theme for this year’s Residents’ Rights Month, “Connection Matters,” emphasizes connections – to family, to friends and to the community – as an essential component of good health and quality of life for residents.

“We want to honor and celebrate each long-term care resident’s individuality and connection to others, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Department of Human Services Director Jamie Ulrich. “Included in this framework, we help maintain their right to have a say in their care and civil liberties.”

Learn more about AAA’s services and programs by visiting 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