We are pleased to welcome The Eden Alternative as our newest partner. If you are committed to doing the very best for your residents, you should get to know them.

We are pleased to announce that The Eden Alternative is now a Senior Housing Forum partner.  We are looking forward to telling stories about how Eden-trained care partners – which include the elders, their family members, and those who support them, from the hands-on staff to management – empower each other to create meaningful and valuable lives.

What The Eden Alternative Does

The Eden Alternative was founded by Dr. Bill and Jude Thomas, pioneers in the person-directed care movement.  At its core, The  Eden Alternative was established to combat loneliness, helplessness and boredom. While there is a tendency to think of these three plagues as something that only impacts seniors, in reality anyone on the care team can suffer from these.  The Eden Alternative approach is to put the person first, believing it will combat these three plagues for every single person who is part of the care team including the senior. The program accomplishes this through a set of practical tools that are implemented through a combination of education and consultation.  The goal is to help organizations across the full continuum of care create living environments, “that honor the voices and choices of the people who live and work there”.

Person Directed Care

If there is a concept or a term that gets talked around a lot it is “Person-Centered Care.” I suspect that, if you visit any senior living community and ask this question:  “Do you provide person-centered care?” they would respond by asking what the heck you are talking about or by saying, “of course we provide person-centered care”. For sure, no one is going to say “no, we don’t provide person-centered care; our care is focused on making a profit or making the staff happy.” The problem is that providing genuine person-directed care is not easy, It goes against the way most businesses, even those in the senior care industry, operate.  It is made worse by a regulatory environment that is checkbox/task-oriented.  This problem is particularly acute in the skilled nursing side of elder care, which is where person-centered care was born.  While this model is more difficult to recognize in upscale assisted living communities, they often operate under a ”let us entertain you to death” model, and not through an empowerment model. The Eden Alternative sees person-centered care as an approach that is based entirely on the unique needs, desires and preferences of the person receiving that care. Eden, however, takes this one step further by advocating for “person-directed care,” which means placing decisions about care in the hands of the elders themselves or those closest to them.

Why You Need to Get to Know The Eden Alternative

There are 7 practical reasons for you to explore The Eden Alternative

  • You will have happier more content residents
  • You will have happier families and better family relationships
  • Your residents will be healthier
  • Because your residents are healthier, you will have longer lengths of stay
  • Your staff will be happier (which, of course, means your residents will be happier).
  • Because of all this, word of mouth will make it easier to fill and keep your community full
  • Finally, because you have happier staff and healthier residents, you will have lower costs.

Steve Moran

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