Long Term Care Regulations for Nursing Homes

Are there long term care regulations implemented in America? Long term care is a special area of healthcare designed to help meet your health or personal care needs for long periods of time. It is a growing industry considering that people are living much longer nowadays.

Medicare, which is a government funded healthcare program, caters to Americans who are above the age of 65. To some extent, it covers long term care and other health services for older individuals. To preserve quality standards in long term care facilities, a federal agency within the United States Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) known as the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services regulates long terms care facilities in collaboration with state and local authorities.


Long Term Care Regulations for Residents of Nursing Care Facilities

The Federal 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act (OBRA ’87) created an emphasis on the quality of life of LTC residents as well as the quality of care provided by long term care facilities. Under OBRA ’87, you have the right to receive the right respect and equal opportunities in nursing care facilities. It should be equal with that of people living in larger communities. In order for nursing care facilities to meet federal Resident Rights requirements, they should participate in Medicare or Medicaid. If you are a resident of long term care facilities, you need to know that you have the right to access your medical or clinical records and to know any changes that may impact your rights as resident, including changes in federal and state laws.


Standards of Care and Quality of Life

As a long term care resident you have the right to make decisions that would impact your quality of life. You also have the right to meet family members or receive visitors. Thus, your long term care facility should set aside a private space for small family gatherings or group meetings. Moreover, as a resident, you have the right to practice your religion and to enjoy social activities. Your long term care facility should also make sure that the area is clean and safe so that quality of life is maintained.


Pharmacy Services

If you are a resident in an LTC facility, your doctor would most probably prescribe medicine that will help you improve your health. Therefore, LTC facilities are required to hire licensed pharmacists who can dispense medicine and prescribe biological materials. Furthermore, long term care settings should have a proper storage for their medications. Pharmaceuticals and biologics must be properly labeled.


If you have relatives living in nursing homes or long term care facilities you need to understand about the their rights as LTC residents. Like other Americans, they have the right to receive quality health care services. If your relative is unable to act upon their own behalf, there must be a legal representative or family member who can make decisions for him or her. To understand the different long term care regulations, you can talk to long term care providers who can answer all your LTC concerns.



  • aaltic.org
  • infolongtermcare.org
  • longtermcare.gov

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