How to Build an Assisted Living Care Team
Building an effective assisted living care team is crucial for success in senior care as the staff of care professionals provide not only companionship, medical expertise and program stimulation for the senior residents; they also provide the foundation for the community.
Residents build relationships with staff in assisted living and rely on them for quality care. “An assisted living community is nothing without the expert care and team of professionals working behind the scenes,” comments Dr. Leslie Kernisan, A Place for Mom expert and geriatrician. “It is these people who families trust with their loved ones.” Learn more about how to build an assisted living care team for your family.
Building an Assisted Living Care Team
There is nothing more emotional than watching loved ones give up their independence and require round-the-clock care. When families and seniors select an assisted living community, it’s a life changing decision. It can be such an intimidating choice that many families ultimately choose an assisted living community where they either make emotional connections with the staff or find a medical team they trust.
Kernisan discusses how geriatrics is really the rocket science for primary care, as building the relationships and collaboration with patient and family is important.
“People need to be informed and educated and look at the big picture. Communities need people who can step up to this obligation,” she notes.
Learn more from these tips to building a successful assisted living care team:
1. Ongoing Training
Both the community management staff as well as the medical professionals need to meet state-mandated standards of care in addition to continuous education program training. A good team consists of knowledgeable individuals who are motivated, informed and remain current with their licenses and certifications.
Many assisted living communities also provide their own training and education programs to get everyone on the same page, with a consistent methodology for care and processes.
2. Good Communication
Families and residents rely on assisted living care teams to not only inform them of their loved ones’ medical conditions, but also work within their teams to provide stellar care. Whether that’s a computer system for tracking care and medical treatment, walkie-talkies for on-floor communication, or good email and phone communication to help keep everyone informed of every care choice in addition to fun events; good communities sets the bad communities apart from the excellent ones.
Good care requires teamwork, bottom line. The assisted living managers need to be on the same page as the event and kitchen staff, and the medical teams to keep everyone informed. Quality of life for residents also includes good camaraderie, community harmony and fun events, and good teamwork is the heart of each of these things. There needs to be a system in place to keep everyone on the same page and keep the community coordinated, fun and professional.
4. Beyond Standards of Care
State-mandated rules and regulations of care are clear, and care teams must meet these requirements. But going beyond these standards of care is what each assisted living community should strive for as keeping residents happy and healthy is more than training; it’s building a care team of enthusiastic people that want to go to work and help the residents. In fact, many residents and caregivers become close friends as they spend so much time together. Going beyond standards of care means creating a senior living experience that puts residents first from both a care and humanity perspective.
What do you think is important in building an assisted living care team? Do you have any experiences to share? We’d like to hear your stories in the comments below.
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