Have you ever heard that strange word “Ombudsman”? Ever wonder what it means? A Long-Term Care (LTC) Ombudsman is an advocate for residents that reside in nursing homes, assisted living and residential care facilities. LTC Ombudsmen receive complaints/ or concerns from residents or from others on their behalf. With the consent, of the resident, the LTC Ombudsman has the authority to investigate concerns or issues and recommend resolution.
The program always needs more Ombudsman volunteer resident advocates. If you’re interested in becoming a volunteer, their next Ombudsman volunteer training is scheduled for Nov. 17-18, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., at the Southwest Technology Center, 722 W. Tamarack in Altusa. RSVP for this training by contacting Gail Wilcox, Ombudsman supervisor at SWODA Area Agency on Aging at 800-562-4882 ext. 132. The Ombudsman volunteer program also provides ongoing education through mandatory monthly meetings.
The SWODA Area Designated Ombudsman Volunteers have over 40 years of experience and are extremely committed to the program and the residents they serve. Over half of the residents in long-term care facilities receive no visitors. “Residents look forward and count on the weekly visits from Ombudsman Volunteers” from an SWODA Ombudsman Volunteer resident advocate. The Ombudsman Volunteer Program requires that potential volunteers are able to spend at least a minimum of two hours a week visiting in designated facility.
Come join others experiencing the value of being an Ombudsman Volunteer. Gail Wilcox, ombudsman supervisor, welcomes questions about the program. Give her a call at 800-562-4882, ext. 132. The SWODA region includes the eight counties of Beckham, Custer, Greer, Harmon, Jackson, Kiowa, Roger Mills and Washita.