What is an Ombudsman Volunteer?

Posted on behalf of Jeff Pitman on December 2, 2008 in Nursing Homes and Elder Rights
Updated on February 24, 2022

An ombudsman volunteer is an advocate for the residents of a particular long-term care facility.  The volunteers visit residents in these facilities and listen to their concerns and complaints related to health, safety, welfare or rights of residents.

Unlike a full-time ombudsman who oversees a large geographic area and multiple facilities, an ombudsman volunteer is assigned to a specific facility and reports to a volunteer coordinator.

Although a volunteer ombudsman’s training and responsibilities differ from that of a full-time ombudsman, the role of an ombudsman volunteer is critical to securing rights of nursing home residents.

An ombudsman volunteer handles issues between residents, or between residents and their staff members. An ombudsman volunteer empowers the resident to solve problems on their own.

The Volunteer Ombudsman Program currently operates in Dane, Rock, Milwaukee, Monroe, Racine, Kenosha, Marathon, Portage, Wood, Waupaca, and Shawano counties.

The Wisconsin Ombudsman Program is currently looking for volunteers.  Here’s a link to their site.

Qualified volunteers are recruited from people like you in our communities. Volunteers are willing to:

  • Give of their time to make a difference
  • Attend mandatory 6 hour training
  • Make unannounced weekly visits to assigned facility
  • Provide their own transportation
  • Spend 2-3 hours at a time between 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • Give a 6-month minimum commitment
  • Undergo a criminal background check, at their agency’s expense

If you have the time and desire to help maintain and improve nursing home quality, please consider becoming an ombudsman volunteer.

Pitman, Kalkhoff, Sicula & Dentice, S.C. is a Wisconsin injury law firm with a devoted nursing home neglect practice.  Our nursing home abuse and neglect trial team has successfully represented abused and neglected residents in almost every county. We know Wisconsin.

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