Specialized Information for:

Long-Term Care ConsumersFamily MembersAdvocates

Consumer Voice History At-A-Glance

1975


The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care (formerly known as the National Citizens' Coalition for Nursing Home Reform) is formed when various citizen groups and long-term care ombudsman programs, convened by the National Gray Panthers' LTC Action Project, gather in Washington, DC, in June. Prior to attending a conference sponsored by the American Health Care Association, the groups meet to become acquainted and to develop recommendations to present at the conference in a united consumer voice.

The Consumer Voice holds its first press conference, attended by Dr. Arthur Flemming, Commissioner on Aging.

1978


The Consumer Voice issues its first paper, The Plight of the Nurse Aide in America's Nursing Homes. A preliminary report on nursing home costs issues also is released. Both are circulated widely to health-care professionals, state and national organizations, state government agencies and nursing homes.

During the Consumer Voice's second annual meeting, reaction and comments are issued on proposed changes federal nursing home rules. Also that day, Rep. Claude Pepper, chair of the House Select Committee on Aging, addresses Consumer Voice.

The Consumer Voice receives a three-year grant from Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA) to recruit, train and place 40 volunteers in 13 project sites, strengthening local and state member groups toward a stronger national network.

1981


The Consumer Voice Information Clearinghouse expands to include board and care issues. The Clearinghouse thrives thanks to a grant from the Administration on Aging. Today, it receives major support from the AARP.


The Consumer Voice conducts a national survey on Medicaid discrimination, issuing a report on the scope of the problem and avenues for resolution. A Citizens' Action Guide to Reimbursement Issues also is published, introducing consumers to reimbursement principles and strategies for promoting quality through the reimbursement system.

1983


The Consumer Voice issues, with 43 national organizations and individuals, A Consumer Statement of Principles for the Nursing Home Regulatory System, following the 1982 release of proposed federal regulations that threatened to severely weaken nursing home monitoring.

Responding to the Consumer Voice's statement and congressional directives, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) launches a study of nursing home regulations. IOM study committee members invite the Consumer Voice to several briefings and work sessions, and commission two Consumer Voice papers on resident and consumer participation.

1985


The Consumer Voice publishes A Consumer Perspective on Quality Care: The Residents' Point of View. For this seminal report, the Coalition convened small groups of residents in 15 states, who described their vision of quality nursing-home care.

A Consumer Perspective is released during a National Symposium on Quality Care in Clearwater Beach, Florida. Seventeen of the participating residents join researchers, educators, advocates, practitioners and public officials to respond to residents' views and chart ways to achieve quality care.

1986


In response to the IOM report, Improving the Quality of Care in Nursing Homes, Elma Holder launches the Campaign for Quality Care (CBC), bringing together national groups representing various health professions, workers, providers and consumers, to develop consensus positions to recommend to Congress in a forum hosted by Sen. John Heinz. Some 10 years later, CBC continues to meet monthly to find common ground on a range of long-term care issues.

The Consumer Voice begins publishing the Quality Care Advocate.

1987


The Consumer Voice presents the Campaign for Quality Care's views to Congress during a session hosted by Sen. David Pryor, who helped craft landmark nursing home reforms. The Coalition steers a national movement for passage of the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, comprised of amendments in the federal budget bill, the Omnibus Reconciliation Act of 1987 (OBRA '87). Congressional sponsors Sen. George Mitchell and Reps. John Dingell, Pete Stark and Henry Waxman hold hearings, where national organizations testify in support of the Campaign's consensus positions.

With bipartisan support, Congress passes the Nursing Home Reform Act on December 22. Elma Holder and Barbara Frank call it "a tremendous victory for residents and for all those groups who worked so hard for so long."

1990


The Consumer Voice helps persuade a federal district court to rule that limited Medicaid-bed certification violates the U.S. Civil Rights Act.

1993


The Administration on Aging (AoA) awards the Consumer Voice a three-year grant to operate the National Long-Term Care Ombudsman Resource Center (NORC).

The Consumer Voice publishes Avoiding Physical Restraint Use, followed by the companion guide, Avoiding Drugs Used as Chemical Restraints.

1995


The Consumer Voice kicks off a campaign to save the Nursing Home Reform Act with a Washington press conference endorsed by Senators William Cohen and David Pryor and Representatives Pete Stark and Henry Waxman. Groups like AARP, the Alzheimer’s Association, the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare and the Service Employees International Union also commit to the Consumer Voice’s fight.

1996


The Consumer Voice publishes and begins national distribution of new book for consumers, Nursing Homes: Getting Good Care There. Authors are Burger, Hunt, Fraser and Frank.

1999


In conjunction with the Consumer Voice Annual Meeting, Senate Special Committee on Aging holds educational forum on Nursing Home Staffing.

2002


AoA celebrates the 30th Anniversary of the Ombudsman Program. Pilot project started in six states for ombudsman involvement in CMS Nursing Home Quality Initiative.

2003


AoA awards the Consumer Voice another three-year agreement to house NORC.

2005


Residents, family members, citizen advocacy group members, ombudsmen, workers and others speak passionately about the need for quality long-term care at official WHCOA event sponsored by Consumer Voice -- Giving Voice of Quality: A Consumer Dialogue on Facility Based Long-Term Care.

2005


The Consumer Voice celebrates its 30th anniversary by examining the past to build strategies for the future under the theme, “Working Together for Quality Long-Term Care.”

2007


NCCNHR added a tagline to its name becoming NCCNHR: National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care

The Consumer Voice testifies at May 2, 2007, hearing on OBRA ‘87, addresses enforcement, staffing and the need for transparency.

2009


Former Kansas Long-Term Care Ombudsman Kathy Greenlee sworn in as U.S. Assistant Secretary for Aging.

2010


The Consumer Voice celebrates its 35th anniversary.

NCCNHR: National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care begins doing business as begins doing business as The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care with "Consumer Voice" as its shortened name.

2014


For up-to-date information on Consumer Voice's activities, read the weekly e-newsletter the Consumer Voice Gazette.