Americare In The News
1/14/21: Mid-Missouri senior home has managed to keep all of its residents COVID-free
VIENNA — Administrators at Victorian Place of Vienna are able to make a statement most senior living communities can't make.
"We are very fortunate in that we have not had any residents with positive COVID tests."
Administrator Angela Reid says they follow all of the state guidelines and then some, "I don't know if you can tell or not, but we have two masks on. We have a KN95 and a surgical mask on over top of it, and we've been wearing two masks since last March."
The 16 senior residents at Victorian Place of Vienna have adapted to a very strict, but safe way of living.
"We've done things such as leave the mail out for 24 hours before we bring it into the building. Deliveries set out of the building for 24 hours," Reid added.
To keep their community COVID-free, all residents chose to get the vaccine.
Reid said the residents are ready for change, "There's some changes that will be coming after their second vaccination for social dining and visitors and things like that, so we're super excited about those changes that's going to be coming for us."
Director of Nursing Amanda Power said the pandemic has brought some tough times for the residents and their families.
"There have been some times where we've had residents tear up and become very sad that they're not able to go out and hug their family members or go stay over the holiday weekends like they normally would."
For that reason, Thursday's vaccine day was an exciting time for everyone.
"When I got here, I went around and talked to the residents and I said 'remember, this is the day we're going to do that first shot,' and they were really excited and they were like, 'oh, can I go and get it now?'" Power said with a smile.
Power said they're a close-knit group and they're all like family, "It comes down to that bond that we have with them, that they trust us to keep them safe."
Victorian Place officials also said they attribute their COVID-free success to employees following the rules closely both while at work, and even as they are off work and in the public.
12/15/20: Americare is Actively Preparing for the COVID-19 Vaccine at Its Communities
December 15, 2020 (Sikeston, MO) — As the COVID-19 vaccine begins to be available, Americare, operators of Senior Living, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing and Memory Care across Missouri, Kansas, Tennessee, Illinois, and Mississippi, is taking all necessary steps to ensure each community receives vaccines for residents and staff. In addition, the company and the communities are undertaking a proactive education campaign to provide as much information as possible so everyone can make an informed decision.
Americare has partnered with CVS and Walgreens was part of the federal roll-out program, depending on which pharmacy is more convenient for each facility.
Clinics will be established for administering the vaccine at each community and all residents and family members will be communicated with directly about those arrangements. Because the vaccine requires two doses administered approximately 21 to 28 days apart, each community will have two clinic dates set.
The educational outreach initiated by Americare in its communities to its residents and their families includes frequently asked questions about the vaccine components, the safety and path to approval, side effects, who can get the vaccine, procedures for vaccinations at each facility, and recommended continued safety procedures after the vaccine is received.
“Since this pandemic began last spring, Americare has taken an aggressive stance in protecting our residents and communicating openly with them and their families,” says Clay Crosson, President and Chief Operating Officer for Americare. “We are approaching the vaccine availability and administration with a proactive level of preparation and communication as well. We want to make sure everyone has all of the information required and that each facility is in a state of readiness.”
Even after the vaccine is administered Americare will continue to take all necessary precautions, including wearing of personal protective equipment, and conducting regular testing and temperature checks. Each community will work with public health officials to determine how and when to adjust policies for visitations and social activities after vaccines are administered.
For additional information on the Americare approach to COVID-19 visit www.americareusa.net/coronavirus.
Patricia Cokingtin, Senior Vice President: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ralph Berry: email@example.com
10/5/20: Americare Communities Across the Country Are Active Hosts and Participants in Active Aging Week, October 5 through October 11
The Americare Focus is on Balanced Aging Across Seven Dimensions of Wellness
October 5, 2020 (Sikeston, MO) — Across its communities in Missouri, Kansas, Tennessee, Illinois, and Mississippi, Americare will be an active host and participant in the Active Aging Week (AAW) from October 5 through 11, sponsored by the International Council on Active Aging. AAW is a celebration of all the amazing things older adults do.
While exact activities will be customized to each Americare Community, each one will celebrate and focus on the company theme of Balanced Aging.
“We believe that the blueprint for wellness as a person ages is a balance between physical, emotional and spiritual focuses and activities that allow each individual to stay as active and engaged as possible for as long as possible,” said Mary Eaves, Vice President of Americare and leader of the company Active Aging Week. “We have a program across our facilities called Balance Academy that is designed to help seniors reduce falls by improving balance and improving confidence. As we thought about Active Aging Week this year, we thought the theme of ‘Balance’ was perfect, but expanded it to seven areas of focus.”
Each community will have programs and activities that address one or more of the seven dimensions of wellness – Physical, Emotional, Social, Intellectual, Spiritual, Environmental and Vocational.
“Through programs like this, we are evolving the care experience from being a Care Community who provides wellness to a Wellness Community who provides care,” added Eaves.
Physical Wellness promotes participation in personal safety and activities for cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, balance and flexibility. This is a multifaceted dimension relative to ability and disability.
Emotional Wellness promotes awareness and acceptance of one’s feelings and the degree to which an individual feels positive and enthusiastic about self and life. It involves the capacity to manage feelings and behaviors, self-acceptance, and coping with stress and life's challenges.
Social Wellness promotes creating and maintaining healthy relationships. It enhances interdependence with others and nature and encourages the pursuit of harmony and feelings of connectedness.
Intellectual Wellness promotes the use of one’s mind to create a greater understanding of appreciation of one’s self and others. It involves one’s ability to think creatively and rationally. This dimension encourages an individual to expand his/her knowledge and skills.
Spiritual Wellness promotes seeking meaning and purpose in human existence. It involves developing a strong sense of personal values and ethics and emphasizes an appreciation for the depth and expanse of life and natural forces that exist in the universe.
Environmental wellness promotes living in harmony with the earth by understanding the impact of your interaction with nature and personal environment and taking action to protect the world around you.
Vocational wellness promotes the process of determining and achieving positive personal and occupational goals and interest. This dimension is linked to discovering an individual’s “calling in life” and encourages one to be a good giver and receiver of Life’s gifts.
In addition to its own programs and activities at its communities, by serving as a host community for Active Aging Week, each Americare community can also select from a wide variety of nationally offered virtual activities and ideas. Visit www.activeagingweek.com for a glimpse of offerings.
8/24/20: Americare One of Only Nine Organizations to Wins Both Customer and Employee Approved Awards from NRC Health
August 24, 2020 (Sikeston, MO) — Americare has earned both the 2020 Customer Approved and Employee Approved awards from Lincoln, Nebraska–based healthcare-intelligence firm NRC Health. The customer award recognizes senior-care organizations across the country for creating an outstanding care experience for their customers, and the employee award recognizes senior-care organizations across the country for engaging and inspiring their employees.
“It is an incredible honor to be selected for these awards as a Top 20 rated company out of 81 of the nation’s leading senior living providers across the country, says Clay Crosson, President and Chief Operating Officer for Americare. “Every member of the Americare team, from those providing direct care to residents at our 144 facilities, to those providing the support across the Americare system, is to be congratulated on this remarkable recognition. It is truly a stunning achievement in the senior-care industry, and a rare distinction. Only top-performing organizations, those with the highest percentage of positive ‘would recommend’ respondents, can qualify. It is the second year in a row for the Customer Approved Award for Americare and the first time for the Employee Approved Award.”
Only 20 Independent Living, Assisted Living, or Skilled Nursing organizations earned each of these remarkable distinctions, and only nine won both. Customer Approved Awards were selected according to the results from NRC Health’s 2019 Resident and Family Experience Survey, and Employee Approved Awards winners were selected according to the results from NRC Health’s 2019 Employee Experience Survey.
To qualify in the customer category, organizations must have a high percentage of respondents willing to recommend their locations to friends and family. To qualify in the employee category, organizations must have a high percentage of respondents willing to recommend their locations as places to work. This measure is known as the Net Promoter Score (NPS), and it strongly correlates with both customer satisfaction and enduring loyalty, or with employee engagement, organizational loyalty, and job satisfaction, respectively.
A complete list of Customer Approved and Employee Approved award-winners can be found here.
“These Customer Approved organizations have dedicated themselves to creating enriching experiences for each person they serve,” said Stephanie Kolbo, NRC Health’s Vice President of Business Development. “As the survey results show, their efforts have not gone unnoticed by residents and their family members. It’s NRC Health’s pleasure to recognize their achievement.”
“In senior living, employee culture makes all the difference,” continued Kolbo. “These Employee Approved organizations have developed working environments that both create and sustain employee engagement, so workers can dedicate themselves wholeheartedly to the people they serve. NRC Health commends these organizations for their dedication to their staff.”
About NRC Health: For more than 39 years, NRC Health (NASDAQ: NRC) has been committed to achieving human understanding and bringing healthcare organizations closer to their customers than ever before by illuminating and improving the key moments that define an experience and build trust. Guided by its uniquely empathic heritage, proprietary methods, skilled associates, and holistic approach, NRC Health helps its customers design experiences that exceed expectations, inspire loyalty, and improve wellbeing among patients, residents, physicians, nurses, and staff. For more information, call 800-388-4264, write to firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.nrchealth.com.
U.S. News Recognition
Congratulations to four Americare skilled nursing communities that have been recognized by U.S.News & World Report. The communities receiving the recognition for their short-term rehabilitation services are Neighborhoods Rehabilitation & Skilled Nursing by TigerPlace in Columbia, Missouri; Pleasant Valley Manor in Sedan, Kansas; Osage Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Osage City, Kansas; and Quaker Hill Manor in Baxter Springs, Kansas. Thank you to every member of our teams at these communities for their resident care and hard work that made this possible. To read about the properties in U.S.News & World Report visit these sites:
- Neighborhoods Rehabilitation & Skilled Nursing by TigerPlace: https://health.usnews.com/best-nursing-homes/area/mo/neighborhoods-rehabilitation-skilled-nursing-by-tigerplace-265840
- Pleasant Valley Manor: https://health.usnews.com/best-nursing-homes/area/ks/pleasant-valley-manor-175232
- Osage Nursing & Rehabilitation Center: https://health.usnews.com/best-nursing-homes/area/ks/osage-nursing-rehabilitation-center-175256
- Quaker Hill Manor: https://health.usnews.com/best-nursing-homes/area/ks/quaker-hill-manor-175470
7/1/20: Connect and Communicate: Americare’s Aggressive Approach to Technology
All of us at Americare are proud of things being done within our company with technology to improve our residents’ lives and the quality of the services we can provide. The prestigious publication The Journal on Active Aging has published a special issue this month, and featured Americare and what we are doing across our company and within our facilities. Our own Jason Baxter, senior vice president of information technology, worked with the magazine to write this article.
We hope you find it interesting and informative. If you have any questions about any of the technologies discussed or any other topic that the article brings to mind, please do not hesitate to ask us.
You may view/download the PDF here: http://bit.ly/AmericareJournalOnActiveAging
7/1/20: Americare’s Aggressive Approach to Technology for Keeping Residents Engaged, Active and Connected to Family, and for Critical Medical and Equipment Data During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Americare operates Senior Living, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing and Memory Care across 144 communities in Missouri, Kansas, Tennessee, Illinois, and Mississippi. In early March, when the signs of the COVID-19 pandemic were just beginning, Americare made the investments that have allowed their residents to stay connected with family and friends, even once quarantine procedures were required.
On March 13, all outside visitors to its facilities were discontinued and all group gatherings stopped. Americare believed that even though it was necessary to shut out visitors, that did not have to mean shutting down social and informational connections.
That meant an extensive investment in equipment, training and learning among staff and residents and families to ensure that residents did not feel isolated or cut off, and that families could feel connected and informed. It also meant an investment in training, protocols and tracking to stay ahead of potential issues across the company.
Among the investments were:
- iPads shipped to every community for resident use and training of staff to help residents keep in touch with loved ones.
- “Join Me” accounts for residents and families.
- Extra training for the facility Lifestyle Teams on various communications.
- Activity software on iPads and computers so residents can be physically active, mentally active and engaged through brain games and exercises.
- Enabling staff remote access to all property systems to provide care and help properties creating less need for property visits.
- Set up eFax capabilities to replace the multi-function device (print, scan, fax, copy) that is typically used by staff and residents thus eliminating potential cross contamination between non-COVID and COVID areas.
- Gathered emails for all resident family members for updates.
- Email protocols established and activated in any community with a COVID case to keep everyone informed (did not activate where there was no activity so as not to create alarm).
- Creation of an “our community and COVID” channel for updates to families online in communities with COVID activity.
- Developed a series of surveys and reports so the company and properties could see the impact/progression of the virus, staffing needs, PPE availability.
- This snapshot allowed learnings from one community to be shared with others and ensured availability of people and equipment where needed when needed.
- An aggressive local media outreach to ensure that when there was a COVID issue at a property, the media would have the facts and no need to bother staff or families, thus protecting everyone.
- Extensive use of property level social media to give a window into the facility that helps ease the minds of families outside.
The actual medical equipment used was also upgraded for such items as vital signs monitoring so that taking vital signs and uploading them into systems was easier. This created more accessible data that gave a consolidated view for monitoring vitals and spotting areas of concern or trends in advance so that testing, treatment, and even quarantine decisions could be made faster and ahead of the virus’ potential progression.
“We believe the investments in technology made at the beginning of the pandemic and as we progressed through the months created an environment of communication to benefit the physical and mental health of residents and families, as well as creating lifestyle opportunities to keep residents engaged during this difficult time,” said Patricia Cokingtin, Senior Vice President of Americare. “In addition, our investments in staff training, software and database management put us in a position to identify issues and even potential issues and react to them in terms of supplies, personnel and evasive actions that we believe kept the virus contained within or even away from communities.”
For more information on how Americare facilities are addressing the coronavirus pandemic please visit our website at https://www.americareusa.net/coronavirus.