|Polk County Enterprise - Local News
Stories Added - January 2009
Copyright 2008 - Polk County Publishing Company
Ombudsman volunteers needed
Polk County Enterprise - January 2009
Have you been thinking about volunteering, wanting to make a difference in the lives of the elderly. What about volunteering as an advocate for residents in long term care facilities? More than 94,000 individuals live in Texas nursing homes and most have no family or visitors. Deep East Texas Area Agency on Aging Ombudsman Program is recruiting volunteers to advocate for these residents. A certified volunteer ombudsman advocates for quality of life and quality of care for nursing home residents. He or she must be tough enough to handle the emotional and advocacy requirements of serving. The ombudsman works closely with residents, their families, and the facility to address concerns of the residents and advocate for resident’s rights An ombudsman also provides information to the public on facilities available in the local community as well as the rights of residents. Free training is provided by the Area Agency on Aging. Upon completion, he or she becomes a certified ombudsman who works under the supervision of the managing ombudsman. There are 1,158 licensed nursing homes in Texas, with only 837 certified ombudsmen caring for more than 94,000 residents. For more information, call Charlotte Drake McGalin, Managing Local Ombudsman at 1-800-256-6848 ext. 229.