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Ombudsman Long-Term Care Program

Responsibilities of an Ombudsman

Nursing Home Resident's Bill of Rights

Information for Friends and Relatives

Information for Residents

Volunteer Program

Do you have what it takes?

Local Ombudsman

Contact Information

Informational Links


The State Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program


This program provides assistance to elderly Tennesseans residing in nursing homes, homes for the aged, assisted care living facilities, and adult care homes. The Ombudsman is available to help residents and their families resolve questions or problems and will advocate for solutions to problems for qualified residents of long-term care facilities. When residents and families cannot resolve their problems through consultation with the facility staff or governmental agencies involved, they should contact their District Ombudsman. The Ombudsman works with many agencies and may be able to help resolve questions or concerns that involve state and federal agencies administering services to the elderly. Concerns can include quality of care, financial information, resident rights, admissions, transfer, and discharge. Also included are questions regarding nursing homes, homes for the aged, assisted care living facilities, Medicaid, and Medicare.


For Residents


The Ombudsman takes time to listen to the concerns of the resident. Residents can share concerns about their situations or other personal concerns. *The Ombudsman will keep these matters confidential. The Ombudsman will assist in trying to resolve concerns and problems and can also explain resident rights

and responsibilities.


Nursing Homes and Assisted Living



This class covers important information for decisions regarding residential long-term care. You will learn the differences between nursing homes and assisted living facilities—very different types of facilities, licensed to provide differing levels of care. The class will touch on how to pay for each type of facility. You will also learn how to choose a great facility and what to look for when you visit. Finally, you will learn what to expect from the facility you choose when you, or a loved one, moves into a nursing home or assisted living facility.


Visit our Tennessee for a Lifetime page for more videos on a variety of aging-related topics.


Nursing home residents have the right to:

      • A safe and clean living environment
      • Privacy
      • Information
      • Exercise their civil rights
      • Participate in or refuse treatment
      • Voice grievances without retaliation
      • Manage personal finances
      • Adequate and appropriate medical and nursing care
      • Be free of physical and chemical restraints
      • Take part in community activities
      • Be treated with courtesy and respect
      • Private visits and unrestricted communications
      • Not to be transferred or discharged from the home
      • Be free from physical, verbal, mental, and emotional abuse


For Relatives and Friends


As a friend or relative, you may have concerns about a resident's care or the cost of care. Likewise, you may have questions about obtaining services from resources outside the facility.


Ombudsmen can:

      • Provide information regarding the admission process to nursing homes, assisted care living facilities and homes for the aged.
      • Help clarify nursing home, assisted care living facility, or home for the aged regulations that apply to your situation.
      • Make helpful referrals to other agencies.
      • Help find solutions to small problems before they get too big.
      • Promote healthy and realistic attitudes of residents and families toward nursing homes.
      • Respect requests for anonymity.
      • Act as a resource for staff training needs.


Volunteer Ombudsmen

Trained volunteer representatives of the Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program visit residents in nursing homes or other long-term care facilities and establish a regular presence in the facility. They provide information about resident rights, quality of care, and quality of life to residents and family members. Volunteers also observe conditions, advocate for residents, and handle simple complaints.


Volunteers are the eyes and ears of the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program and are rewarded by knowing that their presence can make a difference in the lives and care of long-term care residents.


Could You Be an Ombudsman Volunteer?


You could become a volunteer if you feel a concern for elderly residents of long-term care facilities; if you feel you are an assertive, mature person with some experience with elderly persons; and if you are willing to complete a volunteer training certification program and want a responsible, challenging experience.


Contact Information


For additional questions regarding the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program, call or write:


LTC Ombudsman logo

Laura Brown
State Long-Term Care Ombudsman
Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability
502 Deaderick Street, 9th Floor
Nashville, TN 37243-0860
Tel: 615-253-4392
Fax: 615-741-3309
Toll Free: 877-236-0013
TDD: 615-532-3893


You may also contact your your DISTRICT OMBUDSMAN for more information.



Informational Links


The following links pertain to the licensing and standards of nursing homes and assisted living facilities:


Federal Code of Regulations Governing Nursing Homes

Tennessee Licensed Facilities *Please note: This link will take you from the TCAD section of the state site to a Department of Health page.

Tennessee Standards for Assisted Care Living Facilities

Tennessee Standards for Homes for the Aged

Tennessee Standards for Nursing Homes



Last updated 11/24/14.