I visited an Edenising unit within a large NH in Vienna. Nursing manager Silvia Haupt has implemented an Eden pilot project in her unit, making cultural, organisational and structural changes in the utterly institutional environment, designed for warehousing old and frail residents. She had the foresight of budgeting for an evaluation using social capital indicators. We now have impressive preliminary results, which are even more valuable because other units in the same organisation were used as comparison. An executive summary is in the making and I will post it on this blog as soon as possible.
Here is an immediate feedback when I visited: A daughter in her seventies sits with her mother in her nineties, having coffee in the lounge area, where red leather chairs invite people to sit and chat. The daughter took my hand and said: “When my mother came here, we did not give her three days to live. Now she is ironing and helping with the dishes, despite her dementia. Her life – and mine – have changed so much for the better. I am so thankful for this”. If we influence one life, one family biography positively, Eden has done its job and our work was worth-wile.
Of course, we know, Eden improves many lives and family histories and this keeps us going.
Leaving two hours later, the two ladies were still there, the mother licking her plate where she had just finished off a portion of chocolate mousse. The expression in her face said something like: “Heavenly”.