Compassionate Leadership: Building MORALE

Posted by Laura Ellen Christian on Jun 2, 2022 12:00:00 PM
Cultivating my ability to be a good leader has been 18 years in the making, and what I've learned most is that becoming a good leader is a journey, not a destination. And a key ingredient is cultivating compassion.
 
As an executive for a senior living management company, I was directly responsible for a team of six people and indirectly responsible for each Engagement Director across a 40+ community landscape. That's almost 50 people who were relying on me in some way to be a good leader! Luckily, I worked for a company that prioritized people and consistently created a culture anchored in a growth mindset. 
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Topics: compassionate touch, Caregiver Burnout, cultivating empathy, compassionate leadership, growth mindset

Tips for Culturally Sensitive Care

Posted by Andrew Azzarello on May 12, 2022 5:24:56 PM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This month is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. Age-u-cate is excited to prove an introspective view into caregiving within the Asian community from one of its own.

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Topics: compassionate touch

Dementia Perspectives:  Personal and Professional

Posted by Julie Boggess on Apr 11, 2022 4:54:59 PM

I consider myself fortunate that so far, nobody in family has lived with dementia.  Many people working in aging services are there after having personal experience caring for a loved one.  Strangely enough, my first experience interacting with someone living with dementia was in college, during an internship in a CCRC my senior year. 

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Topics: compassionate touch, Personhood, caregiving connection, quality of care

Nobel Prize in Medicine: Touch Receptors

Posted by Julie Boggess on Jan 7, 2022 3:41:31 PM

The 2021 winner of the Nobel Prize in Medicine has been awarded to Ardem Patapoutian. PhD, a neuroscientist at Scripps Research in La Jolla, CA for discovering cell receptors that enable people to sense heat, cold, pain, touch and sound.  The award¹ is shared with David Julius, a physiologist at the University of California San Francisco.

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Topics: compassionate touch, touchisgoodmedicine, scienceoftouch

Staff Development and Retention: Coincidence or Confirmation?

Posted by Julie Boggess on Nov 16, 2021 10:39:47 PM

Part of my responsibility as the VP of Grant Initiatives is to track the progress of Compassionate Touch® and Dementia Live® online coach training for the nursing homes that are participating in our Civil Monetary Penalty Grant (CMP) projects.  We have amassed an impressive list of nursing home staff in Ohio , Minnesota, North Carolina and Tennessee who have completed online training to become Compassionate Touch® and/or Dementia Live® coaches.

After months of reviewing training reports, this week I noticed something other than the number of new coaches, and that is the number of coaches since 2019 who are still with their facility.  

I need to preface by saying that this information has not been confirmed by participating facilities, but each time an email bounces back to me- the name is scratched off my list.  In Ohio, 99/124 Compassionate Touch® and 76/106 Dementia Live® coaches appear to be reachable with the same email address used to enroll in coach training, indicating retention of 79% and 71% respectively.

Admittedly, there is likely a margin of error in these numbers, but assuming a -10%, these numbers are impressive, considering the massive turnover that has occurred during the pandemic.  

Employee Engagement and Retention

While the recipe for retention is far more involved than just providing staff education, I believe I am justified in believing the human resource investment that these participating facilities made in Compassionate Touch® and Dementia Live® training may have contributed to the retention of these coaches.  Many of these coaches are still in touch with me and share their excitement about starting up training again.  

 National Commission for Quality Long Term Care, 2007

 Public Policy and Aging Report, 2017

 National Institute of Health, 2021


The above studies reveal that the reasons for voluntary separation include many factors, but lack of quality training and education, feeling ill-prepared, and absence of professional growth were consistent factors. 

Compassionate Touch® and Dementia Live® coach training is high quality, relevant and fills knowledge gaps that move the ill-prepared to a place of confidence and competence.  These programs are also utilized as career ladder opportunities in many organizations, and that number is growing.

Everyone should take a moment and think of your accomplishments over this past year- I am sure there are many.  For me,  taking stock that perhaps our work at AGE-u-cate® has helped to in some way to keep employees engaged and retained is very rewarding.

AGE-u-cate   Programs Overview

 

 

 

Ready to Address your Staff Education Needs?

 

 

 

 

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Topics: compassionate touch, Dementia Live®Training, retention, front line staff, dementia care training, educate

Expressive Touch in Caregiving is Beneficial for Everyone

Posted by Julie Boggess on Mar 1, 2021 11:20:37 AM
holding_hands-400x225-1Touch connects humans to each other, reduces stress, and communicates care and concern. Don't we all need a little more of this these days?

Compassionate Touch® is an effective caregiving technique that combines expressive touch and compassionate presence.  The good- old-fashioned back rub is making its way back to eldercare, reinforcing that touch is beneficial for everyone.

But, let's not stop at the back.  Add shoulders, arms and hands, legs and feet, and now we have a powerful caregiving protocol that is easy to learn and so effective.

Eldercare providers need tools that improve the quality of life for those they serve.  Additionally, providers need ways improve the quality of the work experience for their employees.  I would argue that there has never been a more critical time than now to seek new ways to retain employees.

Compassionate Touch® hits the mark on both counts.

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Topics: Senior Care Professionals, aging services, Caregiver, caregivers, compassionate touch, caregiving, Stress, eldercare, AGE-u-cate Training Insitute, Employees, touch

Touch is a Touchy Subject in Eldercare

Posted by Julie Boggess on Feb 17, 2021 8:28:31 PM
Human beings need the connection of touch for wellbeing. Expressive Touch is possible and necessary, even during a pandemic.

The pandemic has made us all wary of getting too close to others, and rightly so.  Shivers might run down your spine thinking about touching someone not related to you.

Touch, meaning holding a hand, offering a hug or a warming shoulder rub.  Can we?  Should we?  Touch, is a touchy subject these days, after all.

People express their fatigue with pandemic-style living.  How many times have you heard, "I'm so over it"?

Imagine how over it elders who live in elder care communities must feel?  Separated from family and friends for a year with a profound absence of expressive touch in their lives.

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Topics: Senior Care Professionals, aging services, Elders, compassionate touch, caregiving, expressive touch

Case Study: Compassionate Touch at Presbyterian Senior Living

Posted by Julie Boggess on Feb 10, 2021 11:22:20 AM

 

Presbyterian Senior Living offers love, connection and comfort to their elders by creatively keeping Compassionate Touch moving forward during the pandemic.

AGE-u-cate honors the wonderful work at  Presbyterian Senior Living (PSL), based in Dillsburg, Pennsylvania.

Alicia Fenstermacher, PSL Corporate Director of Purposeful Living and AGE-u-cate Certified Master Trainer shared how PSL keeps resident and employee well-being front and center during the pandemic with Compassionate Touch.

Since 2015, Compassionate Touch is integrated into the culture of care and service at PSL. They have over 230 certified Compassionate Touch Coaches, and  989 trained caregivers.

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Topics: AGE-u-cate Training Institute, Senior Care Professionals, aging services, Elders, compassionate touch, Senior Living, AGE-u-cate®, AGE-u-cate Training, touch

COVID Recovery: Rebuilding Human Connections

Posted by Julie Boggess on Dec 10, 2020 11:25:52 AM
We can restore human connection and relationships post-COVID by understanding the importance of re-awakening the senses through the simple act of touch.
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Topics: The Family Caregiver, Senior Care Professionals, Family Caregiver, Elders, compassionate touch, caregiving, human connection, Covid recovery

Broken Heart Syndrome: Another Effect of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Posted by Kathy Dreyer on Jul 13, 2020 4:16:02 PM

As if life could not get worse. A recent study suggests more people are suffering with stress cardiomyopathy during this COVID-19 pandemic. Stress cardiomyopathy is also called broken heart syndrome.

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Topics: The Family Caregiver, Senior Care Professionals, Family Caregiver, compassionate touch, Dementia Live

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