Times, they are a changin' at PMHH
By Louis Hoglund email@example.com The new focus on patient-centered care has transformed the dull, old institutional nursing home into households and neighborhoods. In Perham, the old nursing home has become something of a paradise; and for a few d...
By Louis Hoglund
The new focus on patient-centered care has transformed the dull, old institutional nursing home into households and neighborhoods.
In Perham, the old nursing home has become something of a paradise; and for a few days in March--a tropical paradise.
Palm trees, fishes of the coral reefs, and vivid colors of the tropics decorated the entire Timber Grove neighborhood at the Perham Memorial Home last week.
Residents and staff took a sea cruise--without leaving home. A journey aboard a luxury liner was the theme for the week--complete with visits to Jamaica, Grande Cayman Island and Mexico.
Food served during the week followed the theme, with tropical beverages, flaming desserts and other exotic delights.
Decorating the neighborhood was a project that involved just about everybody--residents and staff.
This is all a part of our new emphasis on improving quality of life, said Carol Nelson, household coordinator.
Activities that make life fun and fulfilling are an important component of the new focus of long term care facilities. New model of care and culture change is how the trend has been described
We all had so much fun decorating for the cruise ship...we worked as a team, said Nelson. Employees became so involved, that they would bring vacation-tropical items from home to help decorate. Every morning when we came to work, there would be new decorations.
Culture change is what the trend is called around the administrative board room tables. In general terms, culture change focuses on creating a home and community setting---rather than the conventional bedroom after bedroom, down long institutional hallways. But it it is much more than new facilities. Quality of life is improved through the combination of re-designed space and patient-centered activities.
As for the residents, it is simply a fun environment in which to live.
Timber Grove is one of six neighborhoods in Perhams new long term care facility, the others are Pine Harbor, Harvest Glen and Burlington. The final two, Prairie Knoll and Transition, recently opened. There are six households with 16 residents per household, and two households per neighborhood. PMHH is licensed for 96 beds, said Marilyn Oelfke, senior director of long term care.
With all the neighborhoods completed, now the emphasis will be on creating the Town Center. The central area of the original nursing home is being completely gutted, said Oelfke. The Town Center is just what the name implies--there will be a small general store, soda fountain, barber-beauty shop and a central gathering area for residents and families.
The initial goal at the households was to organize one major activity per month, said Nelson.
For March, the cruise ship idea was generated by one of the staff: Theresa Stoderl.
I said to the residents that, if I win the lottery, Ill take them on a real cruise, laughed Stoderl.
Special activities and foods were featured every day. Chefs Steve Goll and Lee Grismer volunteered to make flaming banana desserts, tableside--much like a chef in Jamaica.
On the first day, the residents flew into Texas before boarding the cruise liner. On the menu: BBQ ribs and cornbread. Activity: Texas Hold-em poker.
The tropical cruise was so much fun, it wore out both staff and residents.
The residents were so exhausted, we may need to go to one larger special event every other month, instead of one a month, laughed Carol Nelson.