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New Jersey Long-Term Care Ombudsman

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Complaints received by the Ombudsman’s Office are reviewed by a supervisor and assigned to a Field Investigator/Advocate. Complaints can be received up to three (3) months after the incident has occurred in the long-term care facility.

NOTE: The NJLTCO is not a first response agency. Calls that require an immediate response because a resident might be in immediate danger are referred to local police or the caller is urged to call 911.

The NJLTCO advocates for residents while they are still in the facility in question or if they are hospitalized and are expected to return to that facility.  Complaints related to someone who is no longer a resident of the LTC facility in which the incident occurred, should be directed to the NJ Department of Health (DOH), the State agency that licenses and regulates LTC facilities.  The Department of Health facility complaints line is (800) 792-9770.

Once a case is opened and assigned, the Investigator/Advocate makes an unannounced visit to the facility, talks to the resident to obtain consent to proceed, conducts a complete review of the facts, obtains records, and interviews staff and other relevant witnesses.

The primary function of the investigation is to resolve the problem to the satisfaction of the resident, and to ensure that the resident is safe and that the resident's rights and dignity are being upheld.

If the Investigator/Advocate verifies or suspects that the resident has been the victim of abuse, neglect or exploitation, the Investigator/Advocate will collect the facts, and may refer the findings to the State agency that licenses that facility – either the NJ Department of Health or the NJ Department of Community Affairs. In cases where Medicaid fraud or other crimes are suspected, the NJLTCO may refer that case to the local police, county prosecutors, or the NJ Office of the Attorney General for further investigation.

Last Updated: Friday, 06/09/23