While October has been the month to celebrate Residents’ Rights for some time now, for those that are living in the nursing home, assisted living, and residential care facilities, there are always questions regarding a residents rights.

What are my rights, when I move into the nursing home? Do I have any rights? These are some basic questions that people ask all the time. The answers to the questions are simple.

When people move into a long-term care facility, they continue to have rights and those rights include having quality of life and receiving quality care that they deserve, because their care matters.

Most of the time when a person moves in or decides to move into a long-term care facility, they do not know that they have specified rights and do not know what their rights are. They feel intimidated at times, and have no idea that their problems and concerns may relate to their “rights.” Some have accepted the fact that they do not have rights since many of their rights are violated as a part of the daily nursing home routine. Therefore, residents feel that there is no need to say anything because they are not aware that their problems are rights-related problems, or that anything can be done about their problems.

This is why it is so important to inform residents, residents’ families and friends, and even staff of residents’ rights. One way to show residents’ rights is by giving the residents the quality of life and the quality of care they deserve. This shows that their Care Matters, which means They Matter.

To learn more about residents’ rights, the ombudsman program or to become an ombudsman volunteer, contact Sherra Belk or Michelle Goins at COEDD Area Agency on Aging at 405-273-6410 or Senior Info. Line 1-800-375-8255 or write to them at P.O. Box 3398 Shawnee, OK. 74802. Ombudsman Supervisors are available to speak to your group or organization upon request.