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The purpose of the Long Term Care Ombudsman Program is to improve the quality of life and quality of care of all residents in long-term care facilities in South Carolina.

Residents in long-term care facilities are often physically and emotionally vulnerable, facing daily challenges in pursuing a meaningful quality of life. Whenever problems arise, residents or families can call upon an ombudsman for help. Ombudsmen receive complaints about long-term care services and then voice the residents’ concerns to nursing homes, residential care facilities, and other providers of long-term care.

Experience has shown that when residents and families understand the long-term care system, they are able to effectively act on their own behalf when problems occur. By educating residents, families, and facility staff, the Ombudsman Program fosters an understanding and knowledge of the long-term care system. To find out more, you can view the Resident Bill of Rights in English or Spanish (Declarición De Derechos Del Residente).

More information about the differences between abuse, neglect and exploitation, and who to call should you observe any of them, can be found in this two page "Spot Abuse" brochure (small pdf).

The Ombudsman Program is governed by the federal Older Americans Act and by the South Carolina Omnibus Adult Protection Act.

The Lt. Governor’s Office on Aging administers the statewide program through ten (10) regional offices located throughout the state. These programs are located within Area Agencies on Aging and funded with federal, state, and local dollars. There is no charge for services provided by the Ombudsman Program.

Volunteer Ombudsman
If you are interested in volunteering, our Volunteer Friendly Visitor Program is a great place to make a difference.  Friendly Visitors visit with residents and diminish the sense of isolation experienced by residents, especially those without family.  They provide encouragement and assist the resident in achieving a sense of self determination.  They give residents of a Long Term Care facility a great connection to the community.  If you are interested and want to learn more, call our office or contact the local Area Agency on Aging in your area.  More information and contact information can be found in our Volunteer Friendly Visitor Program brochure.

  • 1301 Gervais Street, Suite 350, Columbia, SC 29201
  • Local: (803) 734-9900
  • Toll Free: 1-800-868-9095