Internship Program

Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program

MSW Intern Position Description

Supervised by: Ombudsman Program Regional Manager and Vice President as specific situations require

Location of volunteer position

In one of seven regional offices and in assigned long-term care facilities covered by that regional territory (Santa Monica, Van Nuys, Pasadena, Long Beach, Torrance, Montebello, or Palmdale).

Purpose of position

An Intern Ombudsman is a representative of the Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman who has an important role as an advocate serving frail and vulnerable residents in long-term care facilities. An Ombudsman works to improve the quality of care and quality of life for residents of skilled nursing, assisted living and board and care facilities (long-term care facilities). To enhance the well-being of all residents in long-term care facilities. To ensure all residents are afforded respect, dignity and the right to self-determination. To empower all residents to engage in self advocacy.

Primary responsibilities

To confidentially investigate complaints made by or on behalf of long-term care facility residents. Effectively communicate resident’s concerns and utilize appropriate investigation and problem-solving methods. Conduct regular unannounced visits to assigned facilities, complete appropriate documentation, and report allegations of elder abuse and neglect. Function cooperatively and pleasantly under Ombudsman staff supervision. Comply with all federal, State and local program procedures and requirements. To witness Advance Health Care Directives (AHCD) for residents in nursing facilities as per Civil Code Section 2432(f).

Length and Time (hours & days) commitment expected

One academic year is required; 16 hours a week to 20 hours a week dependant on university requirements, unless otherwise prearranged with school and regional Ombudsman office, attendance at monthly in-service meetings if on designated placement days, and weekly supervision as required. Regular facility visitation schedule created by the Intern on designated placement days and/or between the hours of 8:30 am and 5:00 pm, weekdays. Expectation of regular communication related to facilities, visitation and residents, including the need for technical assistance from Ombudsman Program staff.

Special Knowledge/skills/abilities required

Compassion for older adults, dependant adults, and all residents of the increasingly diverse community of long-term care facilities in Los Angeles; Appropriate communication skills and problem solving skills; Demonstrate professional and objective conduct consistent with Program expectations, including university expectations; submit timely written documentation related to complaints, including documentation requirements of university, and to cooperatively follow instructions given by Ombudsman staff; dependable; flexible; and diplomatic.

Training/orientation required:

36-hour mandatory classroom training, followed by a 10 hour fieldwork internship, fingerprint and background clearance requiredto obtain and maintain Ombudsman certification from the California Department of Aging. The agency pays for fingerprinting and background check fees.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Age minimum of 18 years 
  • A high school education or equivalent 
  • FBI and Department of Justice fingerprint and background clearance required.
  • If using automobile for this assignment a valid driver’s license and current motor vehicle insurance is required.
  • Potential and current Ombudsmen must have no perceived or actual conflicts of interest that would interfere with or threaten their ability to advocate on behalf of long-term care residents.  Candidates who have worked in a long-term care facility in the last year are not eligible for consideration due to this conflict of interest provision.
  • Full COVID vaccination required.


The satisfaction of working with people in need and promoting change that helps a person live their remaining years with dignity and respect. The opportunity for personal growth and heightened self-esteem through reaching out and offering assistance to others. Valuable knowledge will be gained regarding the rights of long-term care residents, the regulatory system, and the aging network and services available to assist residents and their families.

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