Health and Family Services Cabinet
Health and Family Services Names New Long-Term Care Ombudsman
FRANKFORT, Ky. (Nov. 18, 2008) Cabinet for Health and Family Services Secretary Janie Miller has announced the hiring of Kimberly Baker as the new state long-term care ombudsman (LTCO).
Baker, a state government employee for 18 years, has worked with vulnerable adults and children through child protective services and adult protective services and was a behavior modification counselor for the elderly early in her career. She is a graduate of the University of Louisville and the Certified Public Manager program at Kentucky State University.
The state long-term care ombudsman is involved in investigations of alleged resident abuse, neglect and other problems at long-term care facilities. The long-term care ombudsman also develops policies and procedures addressing issues such as records and reporting source identity confidentiality, ensuring public access to information on long-term care facilities, and providing education and training for staff and volunteer long-term care ombudsmen.
The long-term care ombudsman oversees the statewide program and network of local and regional long-term ombudsman programs that receive, report and work to resolve complaints on behalf of long-term care facility residents.
To provide stability and continuity to Kentucky’s long-term care population, Gov. Steve Beshear returned the position to its original merit system status.
“It is important that the person who represents the interests of some of the state’s most vulnerable residents be taken out of the potential realm of political influence,” said Beshear. “We want Kentucky’s long-term facility residents to rest assured they have someone to count on, someone consistent and dedicated, who will represent their interests only.”
“Kim Baker’s background in adult protective services and experience in working with the elderly make her the natural choice to lead the program,” said Miller. “Her dedication to our seniors and special needs populations will no doubt carry over into her work with Kentucky’s long-term care facility residents.”
“I am honored to have this opportunity and excited to continue the momentum built advocating for Kentucky’s seniors and older adults,” said Baker. “I am looking forward to working with people across the state who are interested in increasing and maintaining quality care for people in placement in our long-term care facilities.”
The LTCO is housed in the CHFS Department for Aging and Independent Living. For more information about the LTCO program, visit http://chfs.ky.gov/dail/kltcop.htm.