A Guide To Reporting Problems About Long-Term Care Homes
Amy’s mom has been complaining to her family that the construction on the LTC is too loud and disrupts her rest. Knowing how sleep deficiency could make her mom anxious, Amy reported it to the administrator of the nursing home right after she got the call from her mom.
The administrator promised Amy that the construction would only take three days to finish, so Amy and her mom kept waiting. However, a week went by, and the nursing home is still filled with the loud noises of hammering and drilling.
Now, Amy wants to escalate the issue.
If this sounds familiar to you, and you are wondering how to file a complaint about a nursing home, CareStory is here to help.
Millions of senior citizens receive nursing care in North America every year, and some angry residents have a lot to say. Most of these complaints show that residents and family members believe that the quality of care provided is subpar.
Complaints That Are Frequently Raised:
Poor food quality
Disruptions to rest and sleep
Abuse and neglect
Unmet resident needs
Quality of care
Lack of cooperation with medical care, etc.
Complaints about nursing homes can be sorted as urgent and non-urgent, which require different steps while being reported.
According to Ontario.ca, urgent complaints include abuse, neglect, harm, and danger to the residents. For example: physical abuse, financial abuse, emotional or psychological abuse, abandonment, etc.
For urgent cases, the optimal approach would be calling or e-mailing the Long-Term Care Family Support and Action Line. The information in the complaint letter should include:
Name of the home
Address of the home
A description of the event
Persons that were involved
How you would like the home to solve the issue
Once the ministry receives your request, they will assess your report and the event. If the complaint is defined as urgent by the ministry, they will take the next step, which is a formal investigation of the nursing home.
In this article, we will include a template of a complaint letter, Feel free to download it!
While the line between urgent and non-urgent complaints is vague (since everyone’s reaction and interpretation of an event differs), the official explanation from Ontario.ca of non-urgent complaints are cases related to the less severe cases such as diet, activities, or care.
There are many ways to report non-urgent complaints. The easiest way is to report the issue to the home directly. Also, what you should write in the complaint letter is similar to the information required for urgent complaints, which includes the description of the complaint, and how you expect the nursing home to solve it.
Also, you can still report your issue to the Long-Term Care Family Support and Action Line, just like you would in urgent cases. You can also contact your local long term care ombudsman. The responsibility of a long-term care ombudsman is to aid communication between family members and the long-term care home.
If you are unsure about what to write in a complaint letter, below is a free template for you to download. Remember that you always have the right to protect your loved one,
Sample Complaint Letter:
[Note: This template provides structure and guidance for writing a complaint Letter. Simply replace information in brackets  with your own information and text.]
[City, Zip Code]
[Name of Recipient]
[City, Zip Code]
Dear [Name of Recipient]:
[Short introduction paragraph – provide the name of the long-term care home you are going to complain about. Include dates, locations, and the conclusion of the event.]
[State the specifics of the event. Describe the persons who got involved, and what consequence the event resulted in.]
[Indicate how you would like them to resolve the problem. Provide the result that you are seeking. This may include reimbursement.]
[Indicate that you are looking forward to their reply within a specific time (choose a reasonable time period). Indicate you will wait for their reply before pursuing other options such as legal counsel or ombudsman’s assistance.]
[Indicate they can contact you about the issue and provide a contact number.]
Sincerely (or Respectfully Yours),
(Sign here for letters sent by mail or fax)