Group outlines roles of long-term care leaders

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Most long-term care professionals are generally aware of the role of medical director. Still, it is common to confuse the duties of the medical director with those of the attending physician.

Nuances of the role of medical director, and other long-term care leaders, are outlined in a new document from the nascent Long Term Care Professional Leadership Council.

The group is composed of the American College of Health Care Administrators (ACHCA), the American Medical Directors Association (AMDA), the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP) and the National Association Directors of Nursing Administration/Long Term Care (NADONA).

"I think a lot of our constituencies misunderstand the role and responsibility of other professions providing care in the nursing home," explained Lorraine Tarnove, executive director of AMDA.

To create the document, the group distilled the essential regulatory responsibilities for each of the four positions: administrator, medical director, consultant pharmacist and director of nursing. While caregivers might not be surprised by the responsibilities listed, the document provides a good refresher, Tarnove said.

"Hopefully it should have a positive effect on care," she said.

The document, "Essential Core Functions," is posted on the Web sites of each member organization.