HEALTH FOCUS: Assisted-living services added at Park Village

Residents in the congregate independent-living units in Park Village now have access to assisted-living services through Parkside Home Health, according to Lu Janzen, administrator.

The Parkside Board of Directors approved the expansion of services to the units March 13.

?We want to help people age in place,? Janzen said. ?As the people living here get older, we want to provide the services to them in those units so they don?t have to move to a higher level of care.?

The first resident moved into the congregate building in early 1998.

?Now they?re two or three years older and some of them would have to move to assisted-living facilities if we didn?t provide those services,? Janzen said.

The present building was not built so it can be licensed for assisted living, but Parkside Home Health can provide those services in the same way they offer services for other residents on the campus or in the community.

?No matter what size unit they live in, they can get these services, and they can get them a la carte or by signing up for one of three levels of care,? she said.

Parkside Home Health will provide housekeeping, laundry, transportation and other services as needed, Janzen said.

?Just about anything a person would need to help keep them independent,? she said.

Janzen said adding assisted-living services has already sparked interest in additional residents moving into the congregate building.

?We?ve sold or rented a number of units and are negotiating more,? she said. ?We just really feel like it?s already a success.?

Currently, 26 of the 40 units are occupied and three more are reserved, she said.

The addition of assisted-living services continues the evolution of congregate living at Park Village, and allows it to be a continuing care retirement community.

The complex opened with a combination of 42 three-bedroom, two-bedroom and one-bedroom units. The larger units filled quickly, but several one-bedroom units remained unoccupied.

To accommodate interest in larger living space, last summer Parkside actually combined four of the one-bedroom units into two two-bedroom units.

?They went right away,? Janzen said, ?Now there seems to be interest in doing it again.?

The campus also has several autonomous duplex units. Last week, the board approved the construction of another.

Meanwhile, Parkside Home Health began marketing its services when Hillsboro Community Medical Center announced it would terminate its home-health services last summer.

?We got our state license in home health so we could provide services to our people on campus if that became necessary,? Janzen said. ?When (HCMC) closed theirs, we began aggressively pursuing it because we didn?t want our residents to have to get home-health services from out of town.?

Cheryl Hartley was hired recently to be the director of assisted-living and home-health services. She succeeds Richard Scheele, who will complete his assignment April 21.

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