We all pretty much know what our rights are. We’re Americans, after all, and most of us have no problem letting someone know when our rights are being stepped on. Have you ever thought about what rights a person has if they happen to live in a nursing home or an assisted living facility? Do your rights change when you’re living in a long-term care facility?
The short answer is, no, they don’t change, but there’s no denying things are different when you live in a long-term healthcare facility. The rights of residents in nursing homes are guaranteed by the 1987 federal Nursing Home Reform Law which requires nursing homes to “promote and protect the rights of each resident.” Strong emphasis is placed on an individual’s right to dignity and self-determination. Each facility that participates with the Medicare or Medicaid programs must adhere to these regulations, so that means all the nursing homes in our area are governed by these rules.
As a resident in a long-term care facility, you have these rights:
To be fully informed of your rights and responsibilities as a resident of the facility where you live
To be involved in your care and treatment – this includes the right to refuse treatment
To keep your possessions (within reason and adhering to the facilities policies)
To receive the best of care and to be treated with respect and dignity
To be free from physical and chemical abuse and restraint
To communicate freely and privately
The federal Resident Rights regulations can be found in the State Operations Manual for Long Term Care Facilities, tag number 483.10.
Questions? Need help? Just give the office a call at (615) 824-2571.