Recently I read an article about how to implement the simple pleasures in a nursing home. This article was a study and suggested that “you must start at the top.” The responsibility must rest with the administrator, the article went on to say, because implementing life’s simple pleasures has to be an interdisciplinary effort, and this effort affects operations across multiple departments.
How true, but simple sounds hard when you say it like that!
Is that not how we do things in long-term care? We turn simple things into documentation and monitoring nightmares!
Well, maybe not everyone in long-term care.
At Siloam Springs Nursing and Rehabilitation, the director of nursing is passionate about change. She is in this year’s AIPP Change Project. When I talk with her, even her name, Selena Powers, reminds me that with serenity there can be a great force for change. Change that can bring simple pleasures to residents. Change in leadership goals that allows one to calmly state, “I am glad the survey brought that to our attention.” Change in dress codes for increased comfort for staff, changes in dining (outdoor deck dining in the scenic hills of Arkansas!) and change in the way we handle survey.
Change is hard enough without making everyone feel that resident-centered care is just another quality assessment tool. A binder labeled “Simple Pleasures” for the resident-centered care quality marker.
Remember: Resident-centered care is not just a new “ phrase line,” it is a feeling about how we want to be treated, how we want our family to be treated, and how we should be treating people already living in our homes. The simple pleasures of food, social relationships, and job satisfaction are measures of quality in long-term care. We know what the studies say………..