Friday, July 31, 2009

Strategies for infusing well-being (part 2)

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information

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Long Term Living

Promoting Physical Well Being

Encourage residents to walk to the dining room and use regular chairs during meals

Allow residents to assist with self-care transfers, dressing, grooming, and bathing

Have residents help with simple chores (e.g., putting away their laundry, making their beds, and straightening up their rooms)

Develop specific exercise programs targeting strength, balance, and flexibility as well as sessions for those who must sit and for those who can stand

Start an afternoon walking club and encourage residents to join

Use the Wii or Wii Fit

Promoting Social Well Being in Part 3

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Strategies for infusing well-being

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information

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Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

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Long Term Living
Part 1

You can eliminate barriers to physical, social, and mental well-being
by Pamela E. Toto, MS, OTR/L, BCG, FAOTA and Laurel Cargill Radley, MS, OTR/L
What do you think of when you hear the term “well-being”? Does it imply happiness? Do we need perfect health to obtain it? The concept of well-being is certainly not new; however, increased use of the term to define health and measure quality of life has perpetuated a new focus on well-being in healthcare service delivery. The World Health Organization (WHO) defines well-being as a general term that encompasses physical, mental, and social aspects. WHO further suggests that in order to reach a state of complete well-being, “…an individual or group must be able to identify and realize aspirations, to satisfy needs, and to change or cope with the environment.” Well-being is recognized as a direct strategy to promote health.

But it is not a starry-eyed concept. It can be real for anyone of any age. A strong body of research supports that persons of all ages can benefit from activities targeted to help meet well-being needs. Key elements are:

The need for sufficient daily physical activity to promote physical well-being

A balance in the number and types of daily activity to sustain mental well-being

Opportunities to engage in meaningful interaction with others to facilitate social well-being

For older adults who experience chronic health conditions, need daily assistance with care, and reside in a long-term care setting, achieving well-being may seem to be an impossible task. In addition to cognitive and/or physical factors that may limit participation, residents in these settings are generally dependent on the formal resources available within the facility and the people who care for them. How can these resources be maximized?

Strategies to Promote Physical Well-Being in Part 2

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Penguin marches into Mitchell

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is an interesting article

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Beacon Herald

Posted By Paul Cluff, STAFF REPORTER

Leave it to the hometown guy who won the Stanley Cup to sum up the excitement only the greatest trophy in sports can conjure up.

"It's the march of the Penguins," Jay Heinbuck said while balancing the Stanley Cup on his shoulder.

The director of amateur scouting for the Pittsburgh Penguins brought the top prize in the National Hockey League home for a day and he shared it with just about everyone in town.

"I woke up at 3:30 in the morning, I was just rolling around so excited about this day. I was fortunate enough this year to win the Stanley Cup and that was such an awesome feeling, and I thought here is my opportunity to bring it (here)."

Mr. Heinbuck popped into a few downtown stores before bringing the trophy to the home of his cousin, Jack Fowler. Mr. Heinbuck and friends played road hockey and welcomed friends from the community for photo ops.

"It's a once-in-a-lifetime kind of thing, I'm glad I got the day off work," said Craig Harris, who brought wife Meghan and son Calum to see the legendary trophy. "It is the genuine article, you can see all the dents in it."

Jodi Heinbuck said her husband had a list of invited friends but word soon spread and people went to watch some road hockey on Napier Street.

Mr. Fowler drove a classic fire truck through the town and before a cruise down Huron Street, they made stops at the Lions Pool and Mitchell Nursing Home.

"Jay is a good friend of some of the residents," said Cheryl Davidson, activity director at the nursing home.

"I couldn't believe when they told us at breakfast the all of Penguin marches into Mitchell

Saturday, July 25, 2009

The Alzheimer's School

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information

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Alzheimer's and Dementia Weekly

A Mentor and student together at The Intergenerational School

Volunteers with Alzheimer's pair up
with young students for new study.

Here is a transcript of part of their story


Ramona: "It is not scientists but local charter school students getting international attention for their Alzheimer's research. Now they just received an award in Singapore. The Intergenerational School paired up young students with senior volunteers suffering from mild-to-moderate dementia. Education reporter Kim Wheeler says they found both generations benefited from their time together."

Kim: "Dianne Leatherberry treasures her time mentoring students at the Intergenerational School."

Dianne Leatherberry, Mentor: "I feel really good about what I am doing because I feel like I am contributing to something."

Kim: "Mrs. Leatherberry's students know that sometimes she forgets things. That's OK with them."

Dianne: I think that's helped me get more comfortable with my memory issues, not so much that I am remembering better but that I am accepting it better."

Kim: "Back in 2007 they started a study at this K-8 charter school to see whether volunteering in a classroom like this can improve the quality of life of those suffering from Alzheimer's. Daniel George is a doctoral candidate at Oxford University. He conducted the research."

Daniel George: "What people said over and over again is that they just enjoyed the presence of kids. They appreciate the affection of children. They felt it was cognitively stimulating. It helped reduce stress for them."

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A closer look at dealing with Dementia

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By Jena Johnson -

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - It's a disease that affects more than five million Americans and the numbers are growing. Dementia causes various stages of memory loss and confusion, that's why nursing home staff believe safety is vital.

Juli Cook has been working with dementia patients for 24 years. "People with dementia will many times try to leave and go home," said Cook, Director of Admissions/Marketing at Pinecrest Retirement Center.

It's what she refers to as "elopement." She said the state requires dementia care programs certain safety procedures, like a secured key pad. "If they do wander off, they can't leave and put themselves in danger," said Cook.

Down the road, at Southland Health Care Center, 70% of their residents suffer from dementia. "It's our job to know where our patients are, what they are doing, so that we're able to meet their needs," said Gloria Bean, RN at Southland Health Care Center.

In both nursing homes, you have to punch a code to get in and out of the unit. "Of course the staff checks on the resident on a regular basis and there's another whole procedure in case a resident is missing and a whole protocol that you have to follow if that ever arises," said Cook.

There are different stages of dementia. Some nursing homes evaluate the seriousness of the disease, to determine if the home meets the patients' needs. "For those residents that...... read more about dealing with Dementia

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Putting to rest fear of `a home'

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals, here is some interesting information

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Read about the Top Ten Nursing Home Niceties

Many seniors can live out their days in enriched environment

Judy Steed
Special to the Star

It's a fact that most of us dread "ending up" in a nursing home.

It's a fear I overcame recently when Irene Borins Ash and her husband Irv took me to see three "good" nursing homes in the Toronto area. (They could have shown me 20, but I didn't have the time.)

They introduced me to three elders who live in long-term care: Earl Albrecht, 74, a retired Lutheran minister who has multiple sclerosis and gets around in a wheelchair at a Leisureworld nursing home; Maureen Hutchinson, 89, a retired librarian living at West Park Extendicare, where she is president of the Residents' Council for everyone living in long-term care in Ontario; and Bob Ransom, 85, the president of the Residents' Council at the Westbury, a Chartwell Seniors Housing facility.

Irene targeted me after my Atkinson Fellowship articles, the original Boomer Tsunami series, appeared in the Star. She noticed my admiration for the lively life in Swedish and Danish nursing homes, where the focus is on what you can do, and she wanted me to know that my concern about the "dead-head" existence of seniors in Ontario long-term care was not helping aging boomers already apprehensive about their future.

"People shouldn't be terrified of nursing homes," she says.

But they are.

"Shoot me in the head first, just don't put me in a nursing home," one of Irv's colleagues told him.

But there's another side to the story, and that's the focus of Borins Ash's book, Aging Is Living: Myth-Breaking Stories From Long-Term Care (Dundurn Press). Albrecht, Hutchinson and Ransom are featured in the book.

"I hate this place, I want to go home," Sandy Albrecht recalls her husband saying when he moved into Leisureworld, on Ellesmere Ave. near Kennedy Rd., in 2003. But she was unable to care for him at their beloved country house.

"Earl couldn't be moved by the PSW (personal support worker) – we would have had to get a power lift – and I couldn't shovel the driveway for the PSW to get in," Sandy says.

She moved to the city, to live with their daughter, to help look after her two grandchildren. Earl adjusted to Leisureworld, "and I'm still adjusting," he says. "Adapting to a new environment can be stimulating."

Initially, Earl led church services and did pastoral visits when residents were dying. Now he writes on his computer and gets involved with committees.

The hard part is making – and losing – friends. The average length of stay for people in long-term care is read all of Putting to rest fear of a nursing home

Friday, July 17, 2009

Lounge program benefits Village Manor residents with dementia

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here are some things that may work for you.

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Special to Reflector-Chronicle

Editor’s note: First names are used in this article for privacy purposes.

According to the nursing staff at Village Manor, 705 N. Brady, Sue, a resident suffering from dementia, does not leave her room. She is not interested in group activities, and does not interact with other residents at the nursing home.

Dementia residents like Sue have a short attention span and often experience boredom and disinterest. This is common behavior for people experiencing the advanced stages of dementia. Other advanced dementia traits can be agitation, combativeness, restlessness, and wandering.

“Sometimes it is difficult to engage these residents, even for just a few minutes,” said Jan Mai, RN, special care unit staff educator. “And with group activities, it is rare that we have every resident on the same page at the same time.”

Last year, Mai and other Village Manor staff attended a training workshop on Alzheimer’s and dementia and learned about the lounge program, which has seen success with Alzheimer’s and dementia residents in other nursing homes. As a result, Village Manor has started a lounge program on its special care unit that provides individual and small group activities to all residents with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

A lounge room has strength-based stations that are specific to the individual’s level of functioning and interests. These stations are tables the resident can visit with props they may hold and use. The props are everyday familiarities that engage the mind and may include jewelry, sewing materials, tools, and puzzles. The majority of residents in Village Manor’s special care unit have advanced dementia. “Sorting” stations are the most beneficial for people in this stage, Mai said.

“These sorting activities are ideal because it helps with the ‘rummaging’ behaviors that are common with people who have advanced dementia. Sometimes residents will attempt to go into areas they don’t belong, such as other residents’ rooms, and rummage through things,” Mai said. “The lounge area gives them a safe place to do this, and it lessens boredom.”

After collecting donated items and shopping in thrift stores, Mai set up three sorting stations- jewelry, sewing, and cooking. She hopes to create a table that would engage male residents with materials such as sand paper, hand tools, nuts and bolts. She also would like to add soft background music.

A nurse or nursing assistant, called a “butterfly,” is to guide the resident from station to station. The butterfly is to be very quiet and provide few cues. If the resident loses interest in one station, the butterfly will show them the next station and see if it will peak their interest. It is up to the resident when they choose to leave.

Sue approached the “cooking” station with Mai and looked over the measuring spoons, pots, and other assorted kitchen ware. Mai held out a colorful apron that women of Sue’s generation would have worn and asked her if she thought it was pretty. Sue replied that she thought it was pretty.

Life enhancement coordinator Lynette Hill picked up a cookbook by Billie Oakley and showed it to Sue.

“Do you remember when ‘Kitchen Klatter’ was on the radio? Billie Oakley hosted that show. This is one of her cookbooks.”

After a moment of thought, Sue said yes, she did remember the show.

After a few minutes, Sue tells Hill that she is ready to leave. Hill escorts her back to her room, and is surprised when Sue holds a brief conversation with another resident in the hallway.

“We just witnessed a miracle,” Hill said. “That is the most engagement we’ve had with Sue since she started living here. I have never seen her talk with another resident.”

When Velda, another resident with dementia, enters the room, she is guided to all of Lounge program benefits residents with dementia

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

New Medicaid rules aim to reduce nursing home admissions

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some interesting info

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

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By Steve Peoples

Journal State House Bureau

Rose Belanger, a resident of Elmhurst Extended Care, will leave the nursing home as a result of new Medicaid rules.
The Providence Journal / Bob Thayer
PROVIDENCE –– Rose Belanger is a fighter, a 79-year-old spitfire raised in the Italian neighborhoods of Federal Hill.

She reluctantly became a nursing home resident in January, hobbled by her second serious fall in two years.

“They said I’d be wheelchair-bound. I fooled them,” she said with a defiant grin this week, sitting in what has been her home for the last six months, Elmhurst Extended Care.

Now, Belanger is fighting to go home.

It doesn’t matter that she has poor hearing, kidney disease, and needs to use a walker. Backed by the Carcieri administration’s push to rebalance Rhode Island’s long-term care system, Belanger –– and dozens more nursing home residents –– plan to leave costly medical institutions voluntarily in the coming months.

“I’d rather live in the apartment. I’ve never lived in a facility like this. Not that this isn’t a good place. But … ,” she said, shaking her head. “Not for me.”

Under the new system –– made possible by an unprecedented five-year agreement with the federal government known as the “global Medicaid waiver” –– hundreds of seniors will be encouraged to leave or be diverted from costly institutions based on stricter eligibility standards that took effect July 1.

Belanger is among the first wave of seniors who carry on their shoulders the hopes of state policymakers and budget officials.

The state budget for the fiscal year that began July 1 projects $27 million in savings directly related to “authority provided under the global waiver,” according to the Department of Human Services. To meet those projections, the state must “divert or transition” 50 seniors each month –– a 20 percent reduction from the 250 who entered a nursing home each month over the last year –– away from nursing homes, according to DHS.

Regulations affecting disabled residents and children in long-term placements are expected to follow in the near future.

Industry officials acknowledge that the new system will have dramatic implications for some of the state’s 92 nursing homes that currently offer a total of 9,281 beds.

“There will be some collapsing of the nursing homes,” said Elmhurst Extended Care vice president and administrator Richard Gamache, adding that the stronger homes, such as his, would survive. “Maybe I’m a little naive, but I’m not fearful of the global waiver.”

Belanger doesn’t involve herself with the political or financial implications of the Medicaid overhaul.

She’s simply grateful the new system allows her to use Medicaid dollars to pay for visiting nurses, minor home modifications, and adult daycare. With those supports, she plans to move into a private apartment with her longtime boyfriend in the next “month or two.”

“I’m excited about picking out the curtains,” she said. “I’m a typical girl.”

But Belanger’s path to independent living will not be an easy one.

Five months shy of her 80th birthday, she has numerous health problems. Her grown daughters work full time and cannot provide regular care for their ailing mother. And questions remain about the availability of services for the exodus of frail senior citizens moving into the community.

While administration officials play down capacity concerns, the state last week issued a comprehensive survey trying to gauge the situation.

“The state is sponsoring an independent survey to assess the capacity of on-the-ground providers in the state to meet both the current and future demand for long-term supports and services as the population ages and the state looks to restructure the long-term care system to better meet the needs of Rhode Islanders,” wrote Gary Alexander, secretary of the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, in a letter to medical providers dated July 1, the same day the new nursing home standards took effect.

And there is a question of what would happen to people like Belanger, who leave, but later wish to return.

They would not be guaranteed nursing home re-admission, based on legislation approved by the General Assembly late last month. Instead, along with all prospective nursing home residents, they would be subject to tighter standards guaranteeing admission only to those who, for example, “require extensive assistance or total dependence” with at least one “activity of daily living,” such as toilet use, eating, bed mobility and at least “limited assistance” with another activity.

The state has all of reduce nursing home admissions

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Nursing Home Activities

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here are some things you may already know.

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Here are more interesting dementia articles and activities,

Kristen Fischer

Activities in nursing homes are designed to give residents an opportunity to interact socially with one another while participating in things they enjoy. From bingo to sing-a-longs, video games to yoga, nursing facilities are providing the residents with their favorite activities while introducing advanced means of stimulating their minds and bodies.

Monthly Birthday Parties
Hold a group birthday party to celebrate everyone born in a given month. Decorate a room and provide cake and refreshments, party hats and festive plates and cups.

Musical Events
Bring in a variety of performers, with special entertainment at holidays. One month hold a sing-along; the next host a pianist or guitarist; at Christmas, invite area schoolchildren to sing. Ask the seniors what kind of music they enjoy, such as tunes from their younger days.

Hold cookouts in warmer weather for both residents and staff. Not only does this serve to get residents outside, but it also gives them a chance to enjoy food they may not ordinarily have, such as grilled chicken, burgers and ice cream.

Sunday Worship
By federal law, nursing facilities must offer residents the opportunity to attend a religious service of their choice. Facilities typically hold services that are non-denominational.

Exercise Classes
Design exercise classes to suit people of all abilities, including those who use wheelchairs. Some nursing facilities have begun incorporating yoga and Tai Chi classes.

Playing Video Games
Many facilities have incorporated the Nintendo Wii into their activities. The video games simulate bowling, golf, even tennis. Even if physically impaired, players can sharpen many of their skills. Besides stimulating minds and bodies, the video games introduce seniors to new technology

Monday, July 13, 2009

Relaxation techniques decrease anxiety in dementia

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NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Acupressure and Montessori-based activities decrease agitation in institutionalized residents with dementia, according to a report in The New England Journal of Medicine.

Nonpharmacological interventions such as acupuncture, Montessori methods, and massage have all been used to manage agitation and promote relaxation in patients with dementia, the authors explain. A number of studies have tested the effects of these approaches, but the studies had significant limitations.

Dr. Li-Chan Lin from National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, and colleagues explored the effectiveness of acupressure and Montessori-based activities in decreasing agitated behaviors of 133 institutionalized residents with dementia. This was compared with the potentially calming presence of a visitor who acted as a control. All participants underwent all three treatments in three different sequences.

Acupressure daily (6 days weekly) for 4 weeks significantly decreased overall agitated behaviors, the authors report, especially in the Cohen-Mansfield Agitation Inventory (CMAI) subcategories of physically nonaggressive and physically aggressive behaviors.

Montessori-based activities on the same schedule significantly improved aggressive behavior and physically nonaggressive behavior, the researchers note.

Although neither approach decreased verbally agitated behaviors, Montessori treatment was associated with a significant increase in positive affect.

Nurses' aides noted all of institutionalized residents with dementia

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Find a cure-panel- Alzheimer's disease

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals, perhaps you would be interested in Find a cure panel for Alzheimer's disease

Becoming an FACP member

How do I become an FACP member?
FACP has an invitation only membership base. You must be invited to join FACP by one of the FACP university or non-profit affiliates.

Is there a fee for joining FACP?

How much do I donate to my FACP Affiliate by completing a Survey?
The range of donations for completed surveys vary according to targeting, length of study, etc. but will be identified in the e-mail invitation.

How old do you have to be an FACP member?
You have to be at least 13 years old. If you are under 16, you will need parental permission to be an FACP Member.

If you are under 13 can you still participate in FACP?
Yes, we have many studies designed for kids but you will need to have parental involvement and participation.

Do you have to be a US citizen to become an FACP member?
No. The FACP Affiliate will invite you to become an FACP member. Virtually, all of our affiliates have international supporters and we often have surveys requiring international respondents.

Which email address should I use to receive the e-mail invitations?
You should use the e-mail address which is most convenient for you. But please inform FACP if you change e-mails or change the e-mail yourself by accessing My Profile.

Does FACP have a referral program?
No. You must be invited to be an FACP member by an FACP Affiliate school or non-profit organization.

How do I stop becoming an FACP member and stop receiving survey invitations?
You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking on the unsubscribe link that you will receive with all survey invitations. You can also click on the Opt Out icon after you login.

Taking surveys for FACP

How does FACP send me a survey?
You will receive an e-mail invitation for each survey that you qualify for.

How many surveys will I receive?
You will be invited to take no more surveys than indicated in your initial enrollment or membership profile sign up.

Can I take more surveys than the number indicated in my initial enrollment or membership profile?
No. The FACP philosophy is that if each person contributes a little portion of their time then the FACP affiliates will benefit significantly by their aggregated contribution. Moreover, FACP’ market research clients want a richer representation of respondents that can be best achieved only by occasional survey participation.

How long will it take to answer each survey?
Survey length varies from 2 minutes to 20 minutes and occasionally longer. We will estimate the length of completion at the beginning of each survey. Longer surveys are often accompanied by higher contribution rates that will reward your Team for your additional time commitment.

If I fail to complete a survey will my FACP Affiliate receive a contribution?
No. Only completed surveys will receive a donation to your Team.

Can I back up and change my answers?
Generally not. To preserve the optimal research results, survey design generally precludes you from revising previous answers.

How much do I contribute more about Find a cure panel

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Here are more interesting dementia articles and activities,

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Experts share views on health care issues

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,

At The Dallas Morning News' invitation, 11 health care experts from the Dallas-Fort Worth area and Texas recently shared their views via e-mail on how to make health care more affordable and accessible.

Here are the issues:

1. Single-payer vs. market-based system

2. Making insurance affordable

3. Rewarding performance

4. Chances for reform this year

5. Fixing Medicare

6. Helping small businesses

7. Long-term care

8. Recruiting doctors to general practice

9. Requiring business to provide coverage

10. Addressing the nurses shortage

11. Encouraging preventive care

Options for reforming health care coverage range from a single-payer system like those in Great Britain or Canada to a mostly non-group market where people would shop for their own private coverage, helped by federal tax credits. Which is preferable? Or is there a better middle ground

DR. RON ANDERSON: I've long been an advocate of the concept of a single-payer system. It's more cost-effective, and its administrative overhead is low. However, I don't think this country is ready for anything that would take away competition. If competition for patient loyalty is possible and if there is still an adequate emphasis on quality, safety and access, I would support it. America uniquely likes competition; we like choices. If the choice of doctor and hospital is made possible, that would be attractive. I think the U.S. will end up being somewhere in the middle of the road. We need to differentiate between socialized insurance and socialized medicine. The former doesn't have to travel with the latter. But to do that we have to change our delivery models to be much more cost-effective than we currently are. But I do think there is a middle ground.

ROSSIA AVERY: As a registered nurse, I have watched insurance companies distort and undermine the delivery of health care in this nation. Patients skip needed medical treatment or appointments or cut pills in half because they can't afford the high cost, even if they are insured. Our physicians are forced to follow protocols that are based as much on insurance profits as on medical standards. And our patients are forced to deal with bill collectors and insurance claims adjustors just as they should be focused on getting better. The insurance companies waste 30 percent of their care dollars on "overhead," although they have never cured a patient and, frankly, deserve no role in the delivery of medicine. The good news is we know how to fix our health care system. Nearly every other industrialized democracy provides quality, universal health coverage from a national nonprofit fund.Think of it as if we expanded and improved Medicare to cover everyone. Under this single-payer system, health coverage and access to care are based on patient need, not your ability to pay. Everyone would be covered for all needed care. You'd be guaranteed your choice of doctor and hospital, and there are meaningful controls on costs. Best of all, medical decisions are in the hands of patients, their families and their doctors and nurses, not private insurance companies. We deserve no less.There are two single-payer bills in Congress, HR 676 and S 703, and Texas is one of many states with statewide bills before the Legislature.

U.S. REP. MICHAEL BURGESS: The guide for reform should read more expert views on health care issues

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Here are more interesting dementia articles and activities,

Monday, July 6, 2009

Important F-Tag Updates

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals, Contemporary Long-Term Care Weekly has alerted you to the

Quality of life F-tags have recently been updated. We have included
the revisions below and a link for your viewing. Be sure your facility is up
to date on the changes.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently released

several revisions to its Quality of Life F-tags. The revisions under
the State Operations Manual, Appendix PP, Guidance for Surveyors went
into effect on June 12, 2009.

The following F-tags were revised:

F172 Access and Visitation Rights

F175 Married Couples

F241 Dignity

F242 Self-Determination and Participation

F246 Accommodation of Needs

F247 Notice Before Room or Roommate Change

F252 Safe, Clean, Comfortable and Homelike Environment

F256 Adequate and Comfortable Lighting

F371 Sanitary Conditions

F461 Resident Rooms

F463 Resident Call System

In addition to the revisions, CMS deleted F255, Private Closet Space,

moved the regulatory language to F461, Resident Rooms.

Go to the link below & once there click on the

CMS'Tramsmittal 48 It will open up as a html (pdf) file

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

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Here are more interesting dementia articles and activities,

Friday, July 3, 2009

Picture menu cards improve quality of life in people with dementia

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals, did you know that picture menu cards improve quality of life in people with dementia. Here is an interesting article in
Nursing Times

by Claire Lomas

Providing older people with visual aids at mealtimes can significantly improve the quality of life of people with dementia, suggests an initiative at a specialist day centre in Manchester.

The picture menu cards were introduced two years ago at Wilshaw House, Ashton under Lyne, after staff at the centre became aware that the older people with dementia who used the centre appeared uninterested in food or eating.

Staff also noticed that people were leaving the table without finishing their meals, and would rather sleep than participate in afternoon activities.

Previously, the day’s menu choices were written on a board, and staff also asked people at the beginning of the day what they would like for lunch.

The problem with this method was that people with dementia can lose the ability to think for themselves, and will often say the same thing as the person next to them, said nurse Les Clarke, director of older people’s services at Housing 21, the not-for-profit organisation that runs the centre.

‘A lot of people coming to the centre had a low BMI and were malnourished. This can be a big issue for people with dementia because it can compound existing problems, such as skin or bowel problems,’ Mr Clarke told Nursing Times.

‘People with dementia also get distracted easily and can’t concentrate or remember what they are doing. They also have problems with language and the ability to articulate what they want,’ he added.

As well as restoring the centre users’ interest in food and helping to stimulate their desire to eat, the initiative has seen all of Picture menu cards improve quality of life in people with dementia

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia articles and activities

Thursday, July 2, 2009


Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals, better late than never from the Cushocton Tribune

Lafayette Pointe Nursing and Rehabilitation Center celebrated National Nursing Home Week recently with an array of activities for residents and staff. Tammy Adams is pictured assisting Ned Wright as residents tie-dyed shirts which they wore on Friday during 1960s, 70s and 80s day. A patriotic day was also held where all dressed in red, white and blue.

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Wednesday, July 1, 2009

4 Ways to connect with technology

Sharon K. Brothers, MSW

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,are you a Facebook addict yet? Notice I added "yet" to the question? Even my 76 year old mom has decided she's got to get onto Facebook - all her grandkids, nieces, nephews, cousins and other relatives keep telling her, "I put my pictures on Facebook!"

I joined a year or so ago, after I realized it was the only way I'd be able to keep up with my kids. They travel the globe and, way before they email their mom, they post their pictures and their adventures on Facebook for all their friends to see.

So now I'm an avid Facebook user, with 82 "friends" that include my relative, my kids' friends and several grade and high-school friends I'm only now reconnecting with (that's fun!).

Technology can be a ton of fun when it fills a need we have. In case of Facebook, technology helps us fill a social need to stay connected - or get re-connected.

In business, it seems to me that we've used technology begrudgingly rather than with the excitement of your first Facebook page.

Maybe we've been off the mark. Maybe it's time to look for ways to use technology to increase our business and social connectedness - and have some fun while we're at it! Consider these ideas:

Your website. Does your website increase your connectedness with the public? Do you tell your story and offer ways for people to contact you? Many company websites today avoid publishing email addresses to keep out unwanted emails, but that's a barrier to connectedness. Like Facebook, your website should be updated often, changing content and images to keep it interesting and alive. It should also connect real people (you and your team) with real people (your clients and prospects).

Email. Are you using email to stay connected with others? If you're reading this via email, you see one of the tools we use to keep in touch with our clients and prospects: subscription emailing through Constant Contact, one of the leading providers of this service (scroll down to the bottom to set up your own free trial). It's easy to use, and very affordable. It doesn't allow you to spam people, but it does give you a very user-friendly tool for staying in touch with a large group of individuals (Clients? Prospects? You decide).

Technology in Operations. Are you using technology to help you manage operations? To track employee hours related to client needs, and to keep care plans and assignments updated? Companies like HealthMEDX (a new partner of ours), Vigilan, and ALWizard are excellent resources. Used correctly, they can not only help you get a detailed picture of your operations but can actually enhance your revenue as you track service needs and staffing more closely. Rather than costing you money, they can actually make you money - something to consider closely right now.

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia articles and activities,