The mission of Alaska's Office of the Long Term Care Ombudsman is to promote and protect the health, safety, welfare and rights of Alaskan seniors, age 60 and over.
- Complaint investigations
- Develop and support the creation and maintenance of family and resident councils.
- Ensure the needs, interests, and opinions of Alaskan seniors are conveyed to policy makers.
- The LTCO program will actively advocate to protect the rights of seniors by educating care providers and the public through community outreach and training.
|A: Result - Seniors who reside in long term care settings will be protected from poor quality of care, environments and/or practices which jeopardize their safety, and from violations to their rights.|
Target #1: 90% of all complaints received by the LTCO program are resolved to the satisfaction of the resident or their representative.
Complaints Resolved to Satisfaction or Partial Satisfaction of Complainant
Analysis of results and challenges: In FFY 2018, this target was met as 98% of the complaints were resolved to the satisfaction of the resident. The Long Term Care (LTC) ombudsmen diligently work to ensure each resident living in an LTC is involved in the resolution of their complaints.
Target #2: The LTCO program shall visit 100% of the skilled nursing facilities and senior licensed assisted living homes in the state at least once per year.
Visits to Skilled Nursing and Assisted Living Homes
Analysis of results and challenges: This goal was met for FFY 2018. The OLTCO visited 100% of Alaska's 18 nursing facilities and 100% of the 305 senior licensed assisted living homes. The OLTCO worked cooperatively with residential licensing to track the opening of new assisted living homes in September to ensure that facility visits were completed to all homes.
Target #3: The LTCO program will make at least 400 visits to facilities annually.
Quality of Care Complaints
Analysis of results and challenges: This target was met as LTCO made an additional 156 visits to facilities than last year. Staff completed 642 routine visits and 161 in response to a complaint. Volunteers made 338 routine visits and 2 in response to complaints. It is important to note that the LTCO completed routine visits while investigating a complaint to make the most efficient use of time and resources.
Target #4: The LTCO program will make quarterly visits to at least 30 facilities annually, targeting those facilities with the most complaints.
Number of facilities that received at least one visit per quarter
Analysis of results and challenges: This target was met as LTC ombudsmen completed an additional 31 quarterly visits over last year. LTCO have been working hard to identify facilities that need additional support and make quarterly visits to these facilities
Target #5: Annually, the LTCO program will analyze the number and types of complaints by facility in order to determine training or changes that could improve care in the ten facilities that need the most support.
Analysis of results and challenges: The State Long Term Care Ombudsman analyzed the case and complaint intake data. This information was shared with staff who then chose 15 facilities to visit at least quarterly. As volunteers become certified LTCO, an effort is made to assign them to visit the identified facilities quarterly.
|A1: Core Service - Complaint investigations|
Target #1: The LTCO program will retain 6 staff and a working cadre of at least 50 volunteers in order to work towards being able to visit facilities on a quarterly basis.
Number of LTCO staff and Volunteers
Analysis of results and challenges: This goal was met for the first time. These volunteers donated 692 hours of time to the OLTCO. The LTCO program has been working hard to recruit, train and retain volunteers over the last several years. We have steadily increased the number of active volunteers each year. In FFY2013, the OLTCO only had 13 volunteers.
Target #2: The LTCO will recruit and train at least 20 new volunteers annually.
Number of Volunteers Trained
Analysis of results and challenges: This goal has been met for the last three years. The OLTCO has been able to increase volunteer recruitment by posting on Facebook community pages.
Target #3: The LTCO program will make contact with all of the resident and family councils at least once a year to explain the role of the OLTCO and offer support.
Number of contacts with Resident or Family Councils
Analysis of results and challenges: This goal was not met. It is a new goal that the program will continue to work on to improve contacts with councils. Note: In FFY 2015, one nursing facility was almost closed down due to poor care. The LTCO staff frequently met with this facility’s resident and family councils in order to improve services in that facility.
|A2: Core Service - Develop and support the creation and maintenance of family and resident councils.|
Target #1: Support the development and strengthening of family and resident councils at all nursing homes, especially those with more than 20 residents, and State Pioneer Homes to ensure these councils are an effective voice for elderly LTC residents
Number of contacts with resident or family councils
Analysis of results and challenges: This goal was not met. It is a new goal that the program will continue to work on to ensure that elderly long term care residents have an effective voice in their facility. In FFY 2018, the OLTCO developed a resident/family council toolkit which will guide facilities as they establish their resident and family councils. In FFY 2019, the OLTCO will share the toolkit with each of the nursing homes and State Pioneer Homes and will follow up with each facility throughout the year to monitor their progress.
|B: Result - The rights, interests, and well-being of Alaskan seniors, age 60 and older, will be promoted and protected.|
Target #1: Annually, the LTCO program will analyze the number and types of complaints to determine systems changes that could improve care in long term care facilities.
Analysis of results and challenges: Analysis of the data revealed that the top 5 complaints in nursing homes were: improper discharge, request for a less restrictive placement, access to physician services and issues with medication. The top 5 complaints for assisted living homes were improper discharge, legal problems, being treated with dignity and respect by staff, request to return home, violation of personal rights/choices. The OTLCO will consider all these issues during the next year to see if there are any systems changes that could be made to improve the lives of seniors in long term care.
Target #2: The LTCO program shall educate the community about long term care, the LTCO program and related issues such as residents’ rights at a minimum of four community outreach or education events annually.
Number of community outreach or education events
Analysis of results and challenges: In FFY 2018, the OLTCO provided community education at 30 events, including housing and health fairs.
Target #3: The LTCO program will provide information and referrals to at least 200 callers annually.
Number of Individuals provided with information and referrals
Analysis of results and challenges: In FFY 2018, the OLTCO provided Information and referrals to 439 individuals who contacted our office for assistance. This number does not include individuals who called our office with a complaint that the OLTCO worked to resolve to the satisfaction of the residents.
|B1: Core Service - Ensure the needs, interests, and opinions of Alaskan seniors are conveyed to policy makers.|
Target #1: The LTCO will participate in advocacy on 100% of the legislative bills or state regulations being proposed that affect older Alaskans.
Analysis of results and challenges: The State Long Term Care Ombudsman worked closely with the Alaska Commission on Aging, the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority, Office of Elder Fraud, and DHSS to identify and support bills that will give state agencies the tools they need to protect seniors from abuse, neglect, and exploitation.
|B2: Core Service - The LTCO program will actively advocate to protect the rights of seniors by educating care providers and the public through community outreach and training.|
Target #1: The LTCO program will provide consultation to at least 40 facilities each year.
Number of Consultations Provided to Long Term Care Facilities
Analysis of results and challenges: In FFY 2018, the OLTCO provided 188 consultations to staff at nursing facilities and assisted living homes.
Target #2: The LTCO program will conduct training at least three times per year to long term care providers regarding resident rights, the role of the LTCO, and LTCO assistance available to care providers.
Number of Trainings Provided to Long Term Care Facility Staff
Analysis of results and challenges: The OLTCO provided 6 trainings to assisted living home staff, covering topics such as residents’ rights, the role of the OLTCO and working with residents who have dementia.
Current as of November 14, 2019