Kathey Greenlee, acting secretary of the Kansas Department of Aging, poses with the HCMC Long Term Care Unit staff after presenting them with the PEAK Award last Wednesday. Pictured are: front row (from left) Elda Hiebert and Joyce Weinbrenner; middle row, Heather Crocker, Eleetra Meierhoff, Charlotte Hagaman, Pam Ratzlaff, Greenlee and Gayla Ratzlaff; back row, Dana Riling, Eleanor Herbel, Liz Markham, Mike Ryan and Marion Regier.
Don Ratzlaff / Free Press
Noting its leadership in the culture-change movement statewide, Kathy Greenlee, acting secretary for the Kansas Department of Aging, presented the staff of the Hillsboro Community Medical Center Long Term Care Unit with its second consecutive PEAK Award last Wednesday.
The award, named from acronym for Promoting Excellent Alternatives in Kansas nursing homes, recognizes progress made through the course of a year to provide residents more say in their general care and create a more family-like environment.
“Your leadership in this movement has been outstanding,” Greenlee said.
Six other facilities in Kansas received PEAK Awards in 2006, but only one other one besides HCMC had received the award previously.
“We applaud the staff at these facilities for creating a different kind of life for nursing-home residents,” Greenlee said.
KDOA began recognizing adult care homes through the PEAK Award in 2002. Facilities must submit applications to be considered.
Enhancements made at HCMC LTCU since its previous application were categorized in four areas.
— Buffet dining at noon meal enables residents to see options and make choices.
— Snack buffet provides drinks, fresh fruit and snacks throughout the day for residents and guests.
— “Daily Pleasures” now part of the admitting process so that an elder’s preferences and habits can be incorporated into daily routines, including morning and bedtime routines, favorite foods, and preferred activities.
— “I-Care” Plan has been implemented, which is written in first-person narrative form and includes resident’s social history.
— A variety of activities.
— Staff, including the administrator, regularly participate in resident games and other activities.
— Staff are assigned to the same group of residents and invited to participate in the care-planning process.
— Families and staff communicate openly about resident needs and wants.
— Career ladder has been available for some time and staff are now beginning to recognize the opportunity to advance with this assistance.
— The entry has been painted, and lamps and tables provide more of a home-like appearance.
— Staff have obtained furniture and decorated resident living spaces; a living-room setting occupies what earlier was an empty space in the main hall.
— Received $100,000 from the city to glaze over cinder-block walls along the hallways.
— Various school programs are involved, including a renewed relationship with the middle school service club, which has participated in parties, table games, volleyball and crafts with residents.
— A noon buffet has brought in new volunteers to assist.
— A program has been instituted for truant children to come to the facility and complete their community service.