It’s easy to feel helpless and stressed in the face of life’s changes, especially when you are responsible for the welfare of a family member who cannot speak or advocate for themselves. To help you take action, we’ve collected 5 ways you, as a caregiver,can advocate on behalf of your loved one. These simple steps ensure your loved one is getting fair treatment and the quality care they need. Additionally, being aware of these measures helps you preserve the rights of nursing home residents everywhere. It’s the small steps that make all the difference.
1. Contact an Aging Life Care Specialist
The Aging Life Care Association helps you find a specialist who can walk you through various aspects of aging. Whether you’re looking for help with home care, insurance, crisis intervention and conservatorship, or even financial planning. An Aging Life Care professional will be assigned to you and your case, helping you through the challenges and logistics of nursing home life and aging.
“The Aging Life Care Professional assists clients in attaining their maximum functional potential. The individual’s independence is encouraged, while safety and security concerns are also addressed.”
2. Become an Essential Caregiver
We’ve talked about Essential Caregiver legislation before, but it is important enough to mention again. In the event of emergencies, like COVID-19, Essential Caregivers are allowed inside care facilities to take care of and visit loved ones. It is in the best interest of nursing home residents to keep this policy alive so residents will never have to experience the damaging isolation that ran rampant during the pandemic. You can read more about the Essential Caregivers Act here. This is one of the best ways to ensure your loved one receives regular visitors and gets the care they need at their senior living facility.
3. Get In Touch with Your Local Ombudsman.
A long-term care ombudsman is responsible for advocating for the rights of those living in care facilities. If you have questions, or need someone to take charge of a situation, the ombudsman can help you get the help and information you need. Care facilities are required to have the phone number of your local ombudsman displayed prominently. Wise and Healthy Aging provides more information about ombudsmen and their role in elderly care and rights.
4. Contact Your Congressman
Occasionally there are laws and acts proposed in Congress that improve assisted care facility policies. In the past few years we’ve seen multiple legislative and policy proposals and changes, such as the staffing standard, dementia care regulations, and a resident’s right to sue, come to fruition. We are also seeing a lot more attention directed to providing more funds and grants dedicated to taking care of elders across the country. We recently posted about one of these proposed laws, and encourage you to contact your congressman to implore them to take action on these policies. This is one of the best ways to utilize the law to advocate for those who can’t advocate for themselves. While one voice may not seem like a lot, it is always helpful for our legislators to know what the people want. And if enough voices speak up, real change can happen.
When a situation has gone far enough and you know your loved one has been taken advantage of or abused, call Gharibian Law (877-460-1187). While a lawsuit might seem daunting, we are here to guide you through the process and give you the best legal representation possible. If you or a loved one have been the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, a law firm will help you through the legal process of seeking justice and holding all parties responsible.