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Advocacy Tools and Successful Practices to Protect Residents from Nursing Facility Discharges Webinar

September 25, 2019        

For the last seven years, complaints regarding nursing facility discharges have been the top complaint received by  Long-Term Care Ombudsman programs.  Presenters  will provide an overview of the Ombudsman Learning Collaborative to Protect Residents Against Nursing Facility-Initiated Discharges project; show how to use federal nursing home regulations and surveyor guidance to address three common complaints about discharge; share examples of legal services and Ombudsman program collaboration; and highlight available resources. Register here.

Presenters: Robyn Grant, Director, Public Policy and Advocacy, National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care; Eric Carlson, Directing Attorney, Justice in Aging; Jamie Freschi, NORC Consultant

NORS FAQ Webinar

September 24, 2019        

Join us to hear answers to frequently asked questions about the revised NORS data collection. Presenters will respond to feedback about NORC’s Revised NORS Training materials and questions asked during the webinar series. Attendees will also learn about additional opportunities for technical assistance regarding NORS and have time to ask questions. This webinar is for all Ombudsman programs. Register here.

Presenters: Louise Ryan, Ombudsman Program Specialist, Administration for Community Living (ACL); Amity Overall-Laib, Director, NORC; and Maria Greene, NORC Consultant.

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD)

June 15, 2019        

As Americans, we believe in justice for all. Yet, every year an estimated 5 million, or 1 in 10 older Americans experience elder abuse, neglect, or exploitation. Working together, we can build the social supports that can prevent this abuse and keep everyone safe as we age.

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) – commemorated on June 15th every year – is an opportunity for people or organizations to take action to protect older people by raising awareness about elder abuse, why it occurs, and what we can do to stop it. We can act collectively to support justice for all.

The 2019 WEAAD theme is Lifting Up Voices. The theme is centered on unifying the parallel fields of Elder Justice and Violence Against Women by bringing to the forefront the lived experiences of older people around the globe. The Lifting Up Voices tools will help with all your planning and promotions.

The World Elder Abuse Awareness Day Tool Kit contains resources to help you engage your community, educate others, raise awareness about this serious problem, and empower people to take action to end elder abuse.

The Toolkit Includes:

  • Outreach Guide: This booklet provides event planning tips and outreach ideas to help organizations generate awareness of the need to prevent elder abuse.
  • Event Planning Materials: Event planning materials such as fliers, and PowerPoint templates are available for you to download and customize to meet your needs. We also provide a list of things one can do to mark WEAAD and links to videos one can show at a WEAAD event.
  • Help with FAQs: Red Flags of Abuse and 12 Things Everyone Can Do to Prevent Elder Abuse handouts to empower organization members to be advocates as they educate community members about this important issue.
  • Fact Sheets: Educate people in our communities about how to recognize and intervene in instances of elder abuse, and provide information to help people protect themselves from potential abuse with consumer fact sheets. These are available in multiple languages.
  • Web Banner: Show support for WEAAD by posting a banner ad on websites.
  • Poster: Raise awareness about elder abuse by putting up an 8x11 inch posters in your community, such as in a local grocery store, pharmacy, post office, and places of worship.
  • Media Tools: Use our customizable social media posts for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram as well as a more formal Press Release template.

Trauma-Informed Care: Nursing Home Responsibilities and Ombudsman Program Advocacy Webinar

June 10, 2019        

Register for a NORC webinar titled, Trauma-Informed Care: Nursing Home Responsibilities and Ombudsman Program Advocacy on Monday, June 10th at 3:00pm – 4:30pm ET.

Ensuring that residents who are trauma survivors receive culturally competent, trauma-informed care is one of several new federal requirements which will go into effect when Phase 3 of the revised federal nursing home regulations are implemented November 28, 2019. Attendees will learn about trauma-informed care, the new federal requirement, how trauma-informed care relates to resident-centered care, and what this means for Ombudsman program advocacy and communication.

Presenters include Nancy Kusmaul, Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, and Patricia Hunter, Washington State LTC Ombudsman. NORC will share resources, including a new fact sheet regarding trauma-informed care. This training is open to all Ombudsman programs.


Older Americans Month

May 01, 2019 - March 31, 2019        

Every May, the Administration for Community Living leads our nation’s observance of Older Americans Month. The 2019 theme, Connect, Create, Contribute, encourages older adults and their communities to:

  • Connect with friends, family, and services that support participation.
  • Create by engaging in activities that promote learning, health, and personal enrichment.
  • Contribute time, talent, and life experience to benefit others.

Communities that encourage the contributions of older adults are stronger! By engaging and supporting all community members, we recognize that older adults play a key role in the vitality of our neighborhoods, networks, and lives.

This webpage will include suggestions, resources, and material to celebrate older Americans and the communities of which they are a vital part. Everyone benefits when everyone can participate. We encourage you to connect, create, and contribute for stronger and more diverse communities this May, and throughout the year.

Leading up to May 2019, this site will promote #OAM19 with materials to help you #ConnectCreateContribute


Navigating the National Ombudsman Resource Center Website Webinar

April 24, 2019        

The National Ombudsman Resource Center (NORC) website is filled with information, resources, and news from Ombudsman programs to support and inform programs across the country. This presentation walks through the NORC website and new On-Demand Training Center. The presentation shows how resources and information is organized on the website and where to go if you need help. Watch this short video as an introduction to the NORC website and read the March NORC Notes to learn more about the NORC website and recent updates. All archived NORC webinars are located here.

View the slides as a PDF.

National Volunteer Appreciation Week

April 07, 2019 - April 13, 2019        

What is your program doing to recognize the volunteers who give their time to visit and advocate with and for individuals that live in long-term care facilities? The week of April 7 to 13, National Volunteer Week, is a perfect time to reach out and say thanks for volunteering with your program and making a difference in the lives of the residents. 

In federal fiscal year 2017, 6,625 volunteers trained and designated to investigate and resolve complaints, contributed 591,363 hours of service to Ombudsman programs across in the country (according to the NORS data). The Independent Sector determined the estimated value of a volunteer hour in 2018 was $24.69. For the Ombudsman program, that is $14.6 million of assets due to volunteer service! Due to the dedicated service of these volunteers, resident access to the Ombudsman program is enhanced significantly and thousands of residents receive information about their rights and have assistance and support in resolving their concerns.

Thank your volunteers

Thank your volunteers and recognize their work publicly by sending NORC brief messages of appreciation for their dedicated advocacy (e.g., examples of their advocacy, years of service, photos). We will post your message on our website and highlight the submissions on our home page. Email your submissions to ombudcenter@theconsumervoice.org.

For more on volunteer recognition, visit:

Revised National Ombudsman Reporting System (NORS) Training Five Part Webinar Series

February 05, 2019 - May 29, 2019        

This is a five-part webinar series on the revised National Ombudsman Reporting System (NORS) training materials created by NORC.

State Ombudsman programs submit data regarding program activities to the Administration for Community Living (ACL)/Administration on Aging (AoA), using the codes, definitions, and activities outlined in the instructions for the National Ombudsman Reporting Systems (NORS). The data has been collected since 1996 and this is the first comprehensive revision. The revised NORS data collection is effective October 1, 2019.

NORC has updated the four-part NORS training materials to reflect the updated codes, definitions, and activities and instruct programs on how to record the work they do. States are to continue to use the current approved NORS codes and instructions and training materials to ensure consistent reporting until the updated data collection is effective on October 1, 2019.

The purpose of this webinar series is to introduce the new training materials to help programs prepare for the transition to new codes, definitions, and activities on October 1, 2019. The first webinar will introduce the revised new NORS data collection and the following four webinars will cover each part of the revised four-part training.

Participants only need to register once to attend all five webinars.

  • Introduction to the Revised NORS February 5, 2019 3:00 – 4:30 ET
  • Part I: Case, Complaint, Complainant and Information and Assistance February 27, 2019 3:00 – 4:30 ET
  • Part II: Coding Complaints March 19, 2019 3:00 – 4:30 ET
  • Part III: Closing the Case – Verification, Referral, and Disposition April 30, 2019 3:00 – 4:30 ET
  • Part IV: Activities May 29, 2019 3:00 – 4:30 ET.

Register here.

Webinar - Advocating for Residents with Mental Health Needs: What to do When a Resident Threatens to Harm Themselves

December 04, 2018        

Join us for a webinar to discuss Ombudsman program advocacy for residents with mental health needs and how to respond when residents threaten to harm themselves.

Dr. Patrick Arbore, a nationally recognized expert in the field of elderly suicide prevention and grief services, has devoted is his life to increasing awareness of isolation, loneliness, and depression in older adults. Dr. Arbore will share warning signs, ways to promote better-informed and healthier communities, and resources and supports for Ombudsmen and residents suffering from inner loneliness, sorrow, stress, and anxiety.

Following Dr. Arbore’s presentation Jamie Freschi, Illinois State Long-Term Care Ombudsman, will share her program’s policies, procedures, and tool that guides the program in responding to residents that talk about committing suicide.

The webinar will conclude with a presentation from Natasha Belli, an Illinois program representative, who will share her experience working with a resident that has threatened suicide and the steps she took to support the resident.

Tuesday, December 4, 3:00 – 4:30 ET


Webinar - Ending Nursing Home Violence Between Residents: Prevention, Intervention, and Advocacy

June 26, 2018        

Tuesday, June 26, 3:00 – 4:30 ET 


This webinar will examine the widespread problem of physical violence (resident to resident mistreatment) in nursing homes and argue that a large-scale public health initiative is needed to end nursing home violence. Dr. Karl Pillemer, Director, Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research, Hazel E. Reed Professor in the Department of Human Development, Professor of Gerontology in Medicine at the Weill Cornell Medical College, will review the research evidence on the prevalence of violence in nursing homes and discuss why intervention in this area has lagged other forms of violence. Options for eliminating violence in nursing home settings, with special attention to transferring knowledge from successful public health campaigns to combat violent behavior, will be presented. Also, Sara Gusler, Michigan Ombudsman program representative, will describe the "Senior-to-Senior Bullying Reduction" training program her agency developed. Following these presentations, information will be shared regarding resources and training for facility staff and long-term care Ombudsman programs.

Webinar - Systems Advocacy: It's More than Legislative Work

January 17, 2018        

View the slides as a PDF.

Participants were taught what is required under the federal law and rule regarding systems advocacy. Presenters shared how they promote better care through systems advocacy at both the state and local level and how they coordinate their advocacy. Attendees also learned about available NORC resources regarding systems advocacy such as the Role and Responsibilities of Ombudsman Programs Regarding Systems Advocacy for State Ombudsmen and Local Ombudsman Program Representatives. These guides briefly define systems advocacy, review the federal mandate and support for systems advocacy work by Ombudsman programs, define several systems advocacy strategies, share examples of Ombudsman program advocacy, and provide resources for additional information. Additional information about systems advocacy is available on the NORC website.

Residents' Rights Month 2017: It's All About Me: My Life, My Care, My Choices

October 01, 2017 - October 31, 2017        

October is “Residents’ Rights Month,” an annual event designated by Consumer Voice to honor residents living in all long-term care facilities. It is an opportunity to focus on and celebrate awareness of dignity, respect and the rights of each resident.

The federal Nursing Home Reform Law guarantees residents’ rights and places a strong emphasis on individual dignity, choice, and self-determination.  The law also requires nursing homes to “promote and protect the rights of each resident”. Residents’ Rights Month is a time to raise awareness of these rights and celebrate residents.

The theme for this year's Residents' Rights Month, "It's All About Me: My Life, My Care, My Choices," focuses on the respect and dignity of every resident.  The theme highlights residents’ rights to choose their own schedule and activities, communicate how and with whom they choose, be free from abuse and unsafe environments, and be treated as an individual with unique wants and needs.  Residents’ Rights Month is a time for staff, families, ombudsmen, residents and other advocates to focus on resident-directed care and emphasizing the self-determination, choice, and quality of life of each resident.

Visit the Consumer Voice website for this year's packet of materials, resident, staff and ombudsmen activities, and information on the Resident's Voice Challenge.

Webinar - LTCOP Volunteer Management: Model Materials and Sharing Best Practices

May 31, 2017        

This 90-minute webinar is applicable to all staff representatives who recruit, train, and work with volunteer Ombudsman program representatives. The speakers shared the new model volunteer intake and risk management materials (e.g., application form, interview questions, code of ethics, acknowledgement form) and highlighted recruitment ideas.

Speakers include Amity Overall-Laib, Director, National Ombudsman Resource Center; Carol Scott, Ombudsman Specialist, National Ombudsman Resource Center; and Lenè Garrett, Volunteer Recruitment Specialist, Oregon Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program.


Webinar - LTCOP Rule: Identifying and Addressing Individual Conflicts of Interest

April 25, 2017        

This webinar was designed to assist Ombudsman program representatives in understanding the Conflict of Interest provisions in the LTCOP Rule and how to apply them in your work. For more information and resources visit the LTCOP Final Rule page.

Speakers include Louise Ryan, Ombudsman Program Specialist, Administration on Aging/Administration for Community Living; Patty Ducayet, Texas State Long-Term Care Ombudsman; Stacey Premo, Director, Ombudsman Program, Toledo, Ohio; and Sara Hunt, NORC Consultant.


Webinar - LTCOP Rule: Supporting Person-Centered Advocacy- Complaint Investigations and Abuse Reporting

March 30, 2017        

The National Ombudsman Resource Center (NORC) hosted the first webinar of a two-part series on the LTCOP Rule. Speakers included, Louise Ryan, Ombudsman Program Specialist, Office of Long-Term Care Ombudsman Programs, AoA/ACL; Carol Scott, Ombudsman Specialist, National Ombudsman Resource Center; and Jan Brown, Ombudsman Specialist PA Department of Aging.

The objectives of this webinar were to:

  • Understand the complaint process responsibilities as outlined in the LTCOP Rule
  • Remain focused on the primary role and duties of the Ombudsman program:
    • to investigate and resolve complaints, whether on an individual or systemic level,
    • obtain resident consent for ombudsman action,
    • know when and how to disclose information, and
    • remember that the goal is to resolve complaints to the resident’s satisfaction.
  • Stay steadfast to the goal of resolving complaints to the resident’s satisfaction

The next webinar in this series will be on April 25.

Slides and Resources

Residents' Rights Month 2016: My Vote Matters

October 01, 2016 - October 31, 2016        

Residents' Rights Month is an annual event designated by the Consumer Voice and is celebrated in October to honor residents living in all long-term care facilities, including nursing homes, sub acute units, assisted living, board and care and retirement communities. It is a time for celebration and recognition offering an opportunity for every facility to focus on and celebrate awareness of dignity, respect and the value of each individual resident. The theme for Residents' Rights Month 2016 is, "My Vote Matters" with the goal of highlighting residents' right to vote and participate in the political process.

Visit the Consumer Voice website for this year's packet of materials, resident, staff and ombudsmen activities, and information on the Resident's Voice Challenge.

Changing Landscape of Long-term Care Conference

June 10, 2016 - June 10, 2016        

Join VOYCE, the local ombudsman program in St. Louis, for the 5th Annual Changing Landscape of Long Term Care Conference. This year, there will be national and local experts present to discuss dynamic strategies, innovative tools and available long-term care options. 

There will be more than 300 professional long-term caregivers as well as individuals and families from the community to attend. Everyone will have the opportunity to interact with sponsors who showcase long-term care services across Greater St. Louis. 

In addition to hearing thought-provoking speakers, facility administrators and social workers earn 7.25 CEUs.

See the entire line-up of speakers with a detailed description of their topics here.

Residents' Rights Month 2015: CARE Matters

October 01, 2015 - October 31, 2015        

Residents' Rights Month is an annual event designated by the Consumer Voice and is celebrated in October to honor residents living in all long-term care facilities, including nursing homes, sub acute units, assisted living, board and care and retirement communities. It is a time for celebration and recognition offering an opportunity for every facility to focus on and celebrate awareness of dignity, respect and the value of each individual resident. The theme for Residents' Rights Month 2015 is, "CARE Matters" with the goal of highlighting quality care.

Visit the Consumer Voice website for this year's packet of materials, resident, staff and ombudsmen activities, and information on the Resident's Voice Challenge.

Identifying, Preventing, and Responding to Bullying in Long-Term Care Facilities Webinar

July 28, 2015        

Save the Date! 

Identifying, Preventing, and Responding to Bullying in Long-Term Care Facilities Webinar

Tuesday, July 28, 2015 3:00 - 4:15 ET

Save the date to join a discussion about the prevalence of bullying among residents in long-term care facilities and learn how to identify, prevent, and respond to these incidents.

Dr. Robin Bonifas, John A. Hartford Faculty Scholar in Geriatric Social Work, Associate Professor with the School of Social Work at Arizona State University has years of experience working with older adults in long-term care settings and she will discuss her recent work regarding bullying among residents in LTC settings.

Following Dr. Bonifas’ presentation NORC staff will share resources regarding resident-to-resident mistreatment and advocacy tips and strategies to increase awareness of these incidents, ensure the rights of all residents are respected, and demonstrate how individualized care is critical to preventing and responding to bullying in long-term care facilities. 

Register Today

Webinar: Supporting Volunteer LTC Ombudsmen and Minimizing Risk

April 28, 2015 - April 28, 2015        

During this webinar we discuss how risk management applies to every aspect of managing and supporting volunteer long-term care ombudsmen. Presenters provide tips for screening volunteers, identifying and removing risk, and responding to situations when the actions, or inaction, of a volunteer LTCO negatively impacts your program. 

Presenters: Sarah Hinzman, Volunteer Ombudsman Program & Americorps VISTA Project Coordinator, IA LTCOP; Darlene Cray, Volunteer Program Coordinator, NH LTCOP; and Amity Overall-Laib, Manager, LTCO Program & Policy, NORC

Additional Resources (shared during webinar)

2015 State LTC Ombudsman Annual Training Conference

April 22, 2015 - April 24, 2015        Decatur, GA

Each spring, the Center holds the annual State LTC Ombudsman Training Conference - the only conference designed specifically for State LTC Ombudsmen.  The conference is held in a different city and state each year. The training conference offers is an  invaluable opportunity for the 53 State Ombudsmen to come together to openly discuss issues unique to their role and responsibilities and to learn from each other in a focused setting.

The 2015 Conference will be in Decatur, Georgia from April 22-24, 2015, with preconference activities on April 20th & 21st at the Courtyard Atlanta Decatur Downtown/Emory Hotel.