Ombudsman Program

What is an Ombudsman?
Ombudsman is a Swedish word that means "citizen representative." An ombudsman works to increase the responsiveness of organizations to the people they serve.

What is a Long-Term Care Ombudsman?
A Long-Term Care Ombudsman seeks to improve the quality of life of the residents of long-term care facilities. These facilities include nursing homes, and personal care homes, often called assisted living facilities or residential care facilities.

Residents of long-term care facilities sometimes have little or no contact with the outside world. Many feel they lack control over their own lives. Ombudsman are available to help these residents.

What does the Long-Term Care Ombudsman do?
• Investigates and works to resolve problems or complaints affecting long-term care residents.
• Identifies problem areas in long-term care and advocates 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 routinely to talk to residents and monitor conditions.
• Educates facility staff about resident rights and other issues.

What types of issues does an Ombudsman handle?
• Rights of long-term care residents.
• Care provided in long-term care facilities.
• Transfers and discharges from long-term care facilities (including assistance with appeals).

Background and Authority
The Long-term Care Ombudsman Program is governed by the federal Older Americans Act and by Georgia law. The Division of Aging Services of the Department of Human Resources administers the statewide Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program through 17 community programs 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. However, contributions are appreciated and are used to support additional ombudsman services and activities to benefit Georgia's long-term residents.

For More Information
Anyone with a question or concern about long-term care, may contact the Georgia Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program.

Call or write:
State Ombudsman Program
Division of Aging Services
2 Peachtree St., NW
Suite 9-398
Atlanta, GA 30303-3142

Call: 404-657-5258 in Atlanta
Information and Referral line 404-657-5319
Legal Services Developer's number is 404-657-5328

Community Ombudsman Program Personnel by PSA and county served: Click here to print off staff directory.