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October 22, 2019

In this Issue:

  1. Consumer Voice and other organizations Commend CMS for Abuse Icon
  2. New Resources Available Related to Opioid Use; National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is October 26th
  3. NORS Technical Assistance Open Dialogue Webinars
  4. New Assessment Tool to Develop LGBTQ Inclusion in Long-Term Care  
  5. Residents' Rights Resources from ACL
  6. New Issue of The Resident Advocate
  7. ACL Webinar on LTC Ombudsman Program and NORS

Consumer Voice and other organizations Commend CMS for Abuse Icon
As indicated in the Consumer Voice Policy Break, “CMS Will Alert Consumers About Nursing Home Abuse,” the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced that starting October 23 it will use a special icon to identify nursing facilities on Nursing Home Compare that have been cited for abuse and neglect. It will also lower the health inspection star ratings for these facilities.

Consumer Voice, along with several other national and state advocacy organizations, sent a letter to CMS Administrator Verma last week indicating strong support for its efforts related to abuse.

We encourage you, too, to thank CMS for these steps to address abuse and neglect before October 23.  You can send a thank you note indicating your support to:  CMS Administrator Seema Verma  at Learn more »

PillsNew Resources Available Related to Opioid Use; National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is October 26
New resources related to opioid use are now available.
  • The Keck School of Medicine of USC through a grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration developed a NEW fact sheet for older adults and caregivers, What I Should Know About Opioid Pain Medication. The sheet is available in English and Spanish.
  • National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is Saturday, October 26, 2019.  Unused prescription drugs can find their way into the wrong hands, and the results can be dangerous and often tragic.  Take Back Day provides an opportunity to clean out your medicine cabinet and safely and anonymously turn in your unused prescription drugs. Find events in your area »

NORC logoNORS Technical Assistance Open Dialogue Webinars

Join the National Long-Term Care Ombudsman Resource Center (NORC) for a series of NORS technical assistance open dialogue webinars now that the revised NORS data collection has been effective for a few weeks (as of October 1, 2019).

Do you have any questions as you enter your work under the revised NORS data collection? If so, join this webinar series to have an informal question and answer session. During each webinar presenters will provide a brief overview of key points for the relevant NORS topics and then attendees are free to ask questions regarding that topic.

The dates/times and topics for the webinars are:

  • Wednesday, October 30, 3:00 – 4:00 ET. Case, Complaint, Complainant, and Information and Assistance (Part I) 
  • Wednesday, November 20, 3:00 – 4:00 ET. Complaint Coding (Part II)
  • Tuesday, December 17, 3:00 – 4:00 ET. Verification, Disposition, Referral, Closing a Case, and Ombudsman Program Activities (Part III and IV)

You only need to register once to attend all webinars. Register »

New Assessment Tool to Develop LGBTQ Inclusion in Long-Term Care

A National Advisory Council, with represenation that includes Consumer Voice, is developing the Long-term Care Equality Index (LEI). The LEI was created by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation and SAGE, two of the nation’s leading organizations serving LGBTQ communities, to help residential long-term care communities serve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender older adults with care and compassion.  The LEI is an assessment tool that will encourage and help residential long-term care communities to adopt policies and best practices that provide culturally competent and responsive care to LGBT older adults.  More than just an assessment, the LEI will provide resources and technical assistance to bring these policies and practices to life.

Consumer Voice is among the 50 organizations that have endorsed the LEI since its announcement in April at the American Society on Aging Conference in New Orleans. National, statewide, or regional aging, senior services, or LGBTQ membership or advocacy organizations interested in endorsing the LEI can sign on here.

The LEI is designed for residential long-term care communities such as independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing, continuing care retirement communities, memory care, and facility-based hospice. Residential long-term care facilities interested in participating in the LEI are encouraged to sign the Commitment to Caring Pledge. More information »

Know Your Rights.jpgResidents' Rights Resources from ACL

Visit the Administration for Community Living (ACL)'s website for Residents' Rights Month resources including their new infographic and handout highlighting the rights of people living in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and other residential facilities.  The infographic is available for download and available in a customizable version so you can enter your Ombudsman program's contact information. Access resources »

Resident Advocate IssueNew Issue of The Resident Advocate

The Resident Advocate newsletter is a great resource for residents and families, and can also be shared among friends, facility staff, and Ombudsmen.  This issue provides information for consumers on antipsychotic medications, tips for participating in your care plan, submissions from the 2019 Resident’s Voice Challenge, and activity ideas to celebrate Residents’ Rights Month.  If you are a long-term care consumer who would like to receive a mailed copy of the next issue of The Resident Advocate, email your address to Read the recent issue »

 ACL Webinar on the LTC Ombudsman Program and NORS

The Administration for Community Living (ACL) is holding a webinar on Tuesday, October 29th at 3:00pm ET entitled "Introduction to the National Ombudsman Reporting System (NORS) Using AGing Integrated Database (AGID)."  The webinar will provide information on the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program as well as NORS data and its uses to inform policy and practice.  The session will include a live presentation of AGID.  No registration is needed. Join the webinar at the time of the event, and use Password: NORSagid1!  Session number: 645 316 491

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