Since 2006, Homestead Village has been working diligently to create the most homelike environments possible in our small houses for care: Fickes House, Radcliffe House and Gelhard House.
Our culture change started with permanent assignments to make sure that caregivers developed a closer relationship with the elders for whom they care. That closer relationship helps caregivers to better know the wants and needs of their elders. Our second major initiative focused on the best possible dining experience. With food, the emphasis is on choice, made to order, natural ingredients, and service when our elders are ready to eat. Our third initiative in the Apostle Center focused on creating environments that allows our elders to live in a more homelike environment.
Changes include the addition of showers to every room, the creation of more private rooms and more privacy in semi-private rooms with a small dividing wall and flat screen TVs that face opposite directions to cut down on noise.
In Gelhard House, the improvements focused on creating more common space and adding additional resident rooms so that thirteen elders can be accommodated. Perhaps Gelhard House's best improvement is is its wonderful life enrichment program. What makes it special are the staff who focus on creating a loving and caring environment for each resident.
Improving life enrichment is the number one goal in the immediate future for the Apostle Center for Care. The Apostle Center's other major initiative is individually washing all personal laundry in the houses. This improvement will begin in January, 2014.
The journey from very institutional to more homelike care is commonly labeled as a culture change or person centered care transformation. Our culture change journey is now seven years old. We have come a long way; but we are no where near finished!
A nursing home or memory support personal care home can never BE home. Our goal is to make each house comfortable, caring and a pleasant place to live, and if possible, return home as soon as possible.