Monday, September 24, 2012

Residents' Rights Month

Residents' Rights Month is an annual event designated by the Consumer Voice and is celebrated in October to honor residents living in all long-term care facilities, including nursing homes, sub-acute units, assisted living, board and care and retirement communities.

Residents’ Rights Month is a time for celebration and recognition offering an opportunity for every facility to focus on and celebrate awareness of dignity, respect and the value of each individual resident. The theme for Residents' Rights Month 2012 is, "My Voice, My Vote, My Right" with the goal of encouraging residents' right to vote and participation in the political process.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of the landmark Nursing Home Reform Law, which was enacted as part of the Omnibus Reconciliation Act (OBRA) of 1987. The Nursing Home Reform Law was the first comprehensive federal effort to promote and protect the rights of residents. Its passage guaranteed residents their individual rights in order to promote and maintain their dignity and autonomy in long-term care facilities.  

OBRA’s 25th anniversary is a great opportunity to bring much-needed attention to ongoing issues threatening residents’ quality of life and care. Despite the federal protections included in the Nursing Home Reform Law, it is still regrettably far too common for residents’ rights to be abused and disregarded in long-term care facilities.

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