Elder Law Clinic co-sponsors free community ‘Conversation with Friends’ regarding improving long-term residential care on April 24

Photo of a former Elder Law Clinic student Elizabeth Bernard going over some paperwork with an elderly woman sitting up in a hospital bed

Elizabeth Bernard, a former Elder Law Clinic student, answers questions for a client in long-term care.

North Carolina’s leading advocacy organization for advancing the quality of life for long-term care residents, Friends of Residents in Long-Term Care, is holding a community “Conversation with Friends” to invite participants to share concerns and lend a voice to the call for improvements. This free event, co-sponsored by the Elder Law Clinic and AARP,  is set for 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday, April 24, 2018, at Hope Presbyterian Church, 2050 N. Peace Haven Road, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

With the state and region’s older population rapidly growing, more North Carolinians than ever before require long-term health care services. Today, more than 100,000 people in the state are receiving care in nursing homes, adult care homes (assisted living), continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs), and home health care settings, according to Friends of Residents in Long-Term Care.

These numbers represent some of the most frail, vulnerable citizens — citizens who have spent years of their lives pouring their support into the life of their communities, and who now need the support of family and friends to ensure that their care settings are providing the caliber of services and quality of life they deserve.
“Our clinic students often help individual clients who live in long-term care facilities,” explains Professor Kate Mewhinney, director of the law school’s Elder Law Clinic.  “But we also need organizations like Friends of Residents to be sure legal protections are enforced and improved. This is a well-regarded consumer advocacy group that knows how to get things done.  Remember:  Any one of us — and our older relatives — might need to spend some time in a long-term care facility. Let’s be sure we have advocates looking out for us.”

“Conversations with Friends” are being held in various locations across the state to offer opportunity for such collaboration at the grassroots level. Local long-term care residents’ advocates will be on hand to listen to participants’ input, respond to questions, and provide resource information.

“We are working collaboratively with residents, families, providers, and advocates to build a sustainable, statewide network of engaged advocates and consumers to improve the quality of life and quality of care in long-term care in North Carolina,” states Friends of Residents in Long-Term Care President Bill Lamb in a press release.

For more information about this event, please visit the Friends of Residents website at www.forltc.org or call 1-919-782-1530. Registration is suggested at  https://aarp.cvent.com/d/mgq765/