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 FFY2019, this target was met. 97% of the complaints were resolved to the satisfaction of the resident. The Long-Term Care (LTC) Ombudsmen continue to work to ensure each resident living in a LTC facility was involved in the resolution of their complaints. The LTCO complaint process is that the complaint begins with the resident and ends with ensuring that the resident is satisfied with the resolution of the complaint.
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 2019 for skilled nursing facilities. The OLTCO visited 100% of Alaska's 19 nursing facilities. The team visited 301 of the 308 senior licensed assisted living homes documented in 2019. The OLTCO worked cooperatively with residential licensing to track the opening of new assisted living homes to ensure that facility visits were completed to the majority of the 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 in FFY 19. Staff completed 710 routine visits and 160 in response to a complaint. Volunteers made 339 routine visits. 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. It is also important to note the amazing work of our volunteers in assisting with facility visitations.
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. LTCO have been working hard to identify facilities that need additional support and make quarterly visits to these facilities. We also communicate with Residential Licensing weekly to ensure that we visit homes that have a high number of complaints.
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 20 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 60 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 in FFY 19. We continue tor retain 6 staff. 60 volunteers donated 905 hours of time to the OLTCO visiting residents and facilities across Alaska. While the number of volunteers is nearly the same as last year, the number of donated hours increased from 692 to 905. This is significant to note. 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 donated hours from 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 and other social media efforts. We also communicate our volunteer needs during presentations at the Interagency monthly meetings of senior providers. We currently keep track of inactive volunteers in hopes that they will resume their volunteerism when they are ready.
Target #3: The LTCO program will contact 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 in FFY 2019. This is a goal that the program will continue to work on to improve contacts with councils. During this current year, we also began sharing our culturally sensitive resident council toolkits with facilities and resident council members.
|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. We will continue to work on this goal 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 began sharing the toolkit with each of the nursing homes and State Pioneer Homes and will continue to 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 or eviction, issues with guardian or legal representative, failure to respond timely to requests for assistance, request for a less restrictive placement, and ability to exercise rights and personal choice. The top 5 complaints for assisted living homes were improper discharge or eviction, legal problems, ability to exercise rights and personal choice, least restrictive setting, and quality of food/food service issues. The OTLCO will continue to analyze these issues 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 2019, the OLTCO provided community education at 20 events, including conferences, housing and health fairs. We also made presentations for community providers. While we exceeded our targeted goal, our numbers were lower than the previous year. This was due to having the LTCO State Ombudsman position vacant for fours months in 2019. The LTCO State Ombudsman typically attends the community events to provide education and training.
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 2019, the OLTCO provided Information and referrals to 346 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 2019, the OLTCO provided 298 consultations to staff at nursing facilities and assisted living homes. This is over 100 more consultations than the previous year.
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: In FFY 2019, the OLTCO provided nine (9) trainings to assisted living home staff, covering topics such as health and safety, residents' rights, and the role of the OLTCO,
Current as of October 13, 2020