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Quality care means doing the right thing, at the right time, in the
right way for the right person and producing the best possible results.
The Medicare program regulates and enforces rules to ensure that nursing
homes, home health agencies, and hospitals comply with federal standards
for patient health and safety and quality of care. However, the quality
of long-term care programs, services, and facilities may vary.
Here are some ways to learn about how long-term care programs and
services in your area rate in quality:
Ask friends and other people you know who use different kinds of
long-term care services if they are happy with the services they get.
Call your State or local Long-Term Care Ombudsman. Ombudsmen visit
nursing homes and other long-term care facilities regularly to visit
residents and take care of complaints. Your local area Ombudsman can
also give you information on the most recent State inspection survey
for long-term care facilities in your area. You can find their telephone
number in the Helpful Contacts section.
Call your State Health Department. Ask if you can get information on
the quality of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities and
services in your area. You can get the telephone number of your State
health department by looking in the blue pages of your local telephone