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Current Newsletter - Friends of Long-Term Care

Providing Consumer-Focused Advocacy and Education - August 2018 News

2nd Annual Evening with Friends

Residents Rights Month

Join advocates, residents, family members and Friends at our 2nd Annual Evening with Friends event to be held October 20th, at Glenaire Retirement Community in Cary. The doors will open at 6:00 p.m. and you will be greeted to the melodious big-band sounds of Raleigh's own Casablanca Orchestra. Other highlights of the evening include:

*Drinks *Heavy Hors d’oeuvres *Dancing *Raffle Prizes*

This Evening with Friends is our annual fundraiser not to be missed. All proceeds support Friends of Residents' mission to improve the lives of long term care residents and their families. You can purchase tickets through BrownPaperTickets. Spread the word. Invite your Friends. This evening is filled with fun for a great cause! Feel free to contact the office if you have questions or have an interest in sponsorship. Stay tuned; the piano will be!

Sharon Wilder Advocacy & LTC Best Practice Awards

Nominations are now open for the Sharon Wilder Advocacy Award and Best Practice Awards in Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Facilities. Each year Friends of Residents gives out the Sharon Wilder Advocacy Award to an individual who has made outstanding contributions protecting consumer rights and improving the quality of long term services and supports in North Carolina. We also want to recognize best practices in facilities (nursing homes and assisted living) when facilities adopt exemplary programming which reflects person-centered values, supports the rights of residents and improves quality of care.

Nominations for any of these awards will need to be submitted by email to no later than September 30th to be considered. Awards will be given at the October 20th Evening with Friends Event. Nomination forms can be downloaded using the following links:

'It's Almost Like a Ghost Town.' Most Nursing Homes Overstated Staffing for Years

Residents Rights Month

Stan Hugo with his wife, Donna, who is a resident at the Beechtree Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing in Ithaca, N.Y. Mr. Hugo tracks staffing levels at the skilled nursing facility.Credit Heather Ainsworth for The New York Times

ITHACA, N.Y. — Most nursing homes had fewer nurses and caretaking staff than they had reported to the government for years, according to new federal data, bolstering the long-held suspicions of many families that staffing levels were often inadequate..

The records for the first time reveal frequent and significant fluctuations in day-to-day staffing, with particularly large shortfalls on weekends. On the worst staffed days at an average facility, the new data show, on-duty personnel cared for nearly twice as many residents as they did when the staffing roster was fullest.

Read more of this NY Times article here.

Conversations With Friends

Residents Rights Month Friends of Residents hosted it's third and fourth in a series of Conversations with Friends in Charlotte and Asheville. These events, produced in cooperation with AARP-NC and the respective regional ombudsman program, were intended to provide a venue for attendees to have questions about long term care issues addressed and to provide citizen feedback regarding their most pressing long term care concerns. Attendees spoke about the high cost of care, confusion with admission contracts and changes over a stay in a facility, turnover in the long term care workforce, adequacy and timeliness of regulatory oversight, failure to adequately address the needs of people with mental illness, and general system adequacy for those wishing to avoid residential long term care. Friends gives our thanks to all who helped put on these events and special thanks to those who attended.


by Carol Kelly

Each year many older adults and individuals with disabilities lose their legal rights when a guardian is appointed to oversee their affairs. Across the country, states are working to update laws and practices to better preserve dignity, rights, and the independence of vulnerable citizens.

Numerous concerns about the current system have been identified, including a presumption of permanence, lack of accountability, isolation, outdated language (e.g. ward, incompetence), loss of rights, and lack of implementation of less restrictive practices such as supportive decision making, use of support teams, or power of attorneys. Recently the Uniform Law Commission passed a Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act. This act addresses many advocates' concerns and urges states to consider implementing relevant areas of the act in their own general statutes.

In North Carolina, Rethinking Guardianship: Building a Case for Less Restrictive Alternatives has just completed its third year in operation. The goal of this diverse statewide workgroup is to identify needed changes to 35A: Incompetency and Guardianship, North Carolina’s General Statute associated guardianship laws. They are to gather data, promote least restrictive practices and alternatives, provide training, and recommend implementation of pilots. Listening sessions with key stakeholders will be a key component in the coming year to build support and understating of needed changes. Reviewing guardianship practices for those in long-term care facilities is one of the group’s goals. This project was launched by the NC Division of Aging and Adult Services with funding from the NC Council on Developmental Disabilities in partnership with the Jordan Institute at the School of Social Work at UNC. Readers are urged to visit the website to learn more.

The group hopes to build support for proposed revisions to statues in the 2019 long session and improve quality of live for older adults in North Carolina.

Welcome Sandy Deutsch

Residents Rights Month The board of directors welcomes our newest board member, Sandy Deutsch. Sandy is a retired social worker who comes to Friends after a 40 year social work career in a wide variety of settings, beginning as a clinical social worker at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. Over her career she worked in both North and South Carolina. Before retirement, she was the Coordinator of Adoptions with Lutheran Family Services in Raleigh and then served as the Director of Jewish Family Services also in Raleigh. She currently serves as a volunteer ombudsman on the Wake County Nursing Home Community Advisory Committee. We are pleased to introduce her to our network.

Please consider donating to help improve long-term care

Your tax-deductible donation supports our mission to improve long-term care in residential and community settings throughout the state. Your support allows us to answer questions on our Consumer Warm-Line, develop workshops for long-term care residents and their family members, and raise public awareness about long-term care issues. Click here to support Friends of Residents in Long-Term Care. Thank you so much for your help!

Copyright © 2018 Friends of Residents in Long-Term Care, All rights reserved.


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