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The staff at Bethany Life prides itself on its innovative programming and forward thinking approach towards the trending needs of dementia care, mental health care, and behavioral health care. Bethany Life is already caring for individuals with these challenges, however we want to continue to get better at what we do, so we are shaping the future of healthcare in Story County in the following ways:
Memory care expansion with 49 beds in a continuum of care.
Mental health care with staff opportunities for advancing their skills in this specialized service.
Behavioral health support and on-site therapy services.
Walker Place has 14 semi-private and two private rooms set aside for persons with milder memory loss symptoms. The memory loss and care needs that result from the disease process lend a person in this household to requiring redirection, reassurance, cueing, and some level of assistance with activities of daily living. This is a secured household which provides safety for those who wander.
David’s Place possesses 12 semi-private and five private rooms in a secured household for individuals with a more moderate level of memory loss. Those who reside in David’s Place may have exit-seeking type of activity, mental health care needs requiring specialized staff skills, and greater one on one opportunity to assist at meals. The persons residing on David’s Place may exhibit a greater amount of fear and restlessness due to their advancing disease process. Their abilities are retained in their sensory needs, living in the moment, and their curiosity.
Julia’s Place houses 14 semi-private and two private rooms in a secured household for persons with advanced dementia. The residents who reside in Julia’s Place have a greater need for redirection, one on one attention for agitation and restlessness, greater need for assistance with meals, and extensive need of assistance with activities of daily living. This population can at any time represent a mixed census of young and elderly; independent and dependent; verbal and non-verbal; and more or less alert. Their strengths are in the short moments of connection, recognition of familiar people and objects they like, and bonding through touch.
The Households of Bethany have two separate sensory rooms located in Walker and Julia’s Place. These rooms are used by residents, their families, and our staff. The sensory rooms act as a calming environment and cognitive skills building area. Examples of ways these spaces may be used include one on one time between staff and individuals with agitation and restlessness, occupational therapy, talk therapy, and a space for staff and families to enjoy time alone.
Education for our staff through Mental Health First Aid, Person Centered Care, Positive Approach Care, and Awareness-Vigilance-Avoidance-Defense-Escape (AVADE) provide specialized skill sets for our caregivers. A successful memory care program asks, “What is working well?” What needs to change?” Here at Bethany Life, we have dedicated staff in each of our households who have a real love for those they have under their care. Consistent caregivers are important in the setting of our secured households, but we are also aware that burn-out of our key staff needs to be monitored. The higher care needs of David’s Place and Julia’s Place can put our staff at risk of caregiver burnout. Staff rotation through the memory care continuum provides an opportunity for our staff to work in an environment such as Walker Place that is more of a relaxed atmosphere.