Updates from the Office of the Ombudsman for Long-Term Care

The Office of the Ombudsman for Long-Term Care has announced a new fulltime position within the Ombudsmen’s Office—the Resident and Family Council (RFACE) Specialist.

This position will be filled by Ann Holme, who has almost 20 years of Regional Ombudsman experience in west central Minnesota. In her new statewide role, Ann will be focused on developing and educating resident and family councils to advocate for improvements to quality of care and life in long-term care settings. A major component of the role is training on topics including residents’ rights and responsibilities, care issues, council organization and maintenance, regulations, and resident and family self-help methods. 

Ann will be coordinating with a variety of people including nursing home resident and family councils, nursing home staff who support resident and family council training needs, Regional Ombudsmen, and Certified Ombudsman Volunteers (COVs). Ann states, “I look forward to working together to empower the voices of residents and families as we advocate for ways to improve residents’ life and care and meet the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Minnesota Early Voting for 2020 General Election Starts Friday, September 18

On Monday, the Ombudsman Office issued “Voting and COVID-19 for MN LTC Residents and Providers,” a fact sheet to raise awareness and help guide providers and voting-eligible residents through the option to vote by mail using the Minnesota absentee ballot process in the 2020 general election on November 3. 

Voting is a basic resident right under both federal and state regulations. With visitation restrictions due to COVID-19, residents may need additional support to vote. This year, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) both encourage voting by mail with absentee voting. 

The Office of the Ombudsman would like to thank in advance the social workers, activity professionals, and facility staff for their efforts to support a resident’s right to vote and participate in the political process.

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