5 Practices for Honoring and Celebrating Caregivers this Holiday Season

Posted by Pam Brandon on Dec 23, 2021 3:00:00 PM

The stakes are different as the holidays arrive, especially in year #2 of the pandemic. While carols are playing, there are emotional minefields at every bend, especially for caregivers. This holiday season is a weary one for healthcare workers in the hospital setting to those serving in long-term care services. 

For many, the holidays are a time of celebration and gatherings, but let us not forget those working tirelessly amid unprecedented staffing shortages and the sudden surge in COVID cases.

Research consistently reports that caregivers report much higher stress levels than the average person; it is a certainty that CNAs, PSWs, nurses, and other caregiving staff feel the additional strain of the holidays. Their professional burdens often transfer to their personal lives, leaving a domino effect of anxiety to entire families.

What can we do to honor and support caregivers this holiday (and always)?

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Topics: Professional Caregivers, Caregiver Stress, front line staff, Leader Support

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

No Surprise- The Top Educational Priority for Aging Services Providers is...

Posted by Julie Boggess on Oct 19, 2021 7:29:50 PM

In an effort to learn about the educational priorities for Aging Services providers, AGE-u-cate® conducted a survey and asked respondents to identify topics most important for staff.  Fifty percent (50%) of respondents represented the nursing home industry, and the remainder was a combination of other sectors and professionals that serve the industry.  Sixteen topics were offered, and 63% of the respondents selected "Preventing Caregiver Burnout" as most important.  

One survey respondent shared,

Caregiver Burnout Quote

The American Medical Association urges leaders to "strive to maintain critical infrastructure and have support in place for staff during this time, knowing that this may require modifications to existing strategies, tactics and roles." An imperative strategy is to educate staff on the signs of chronic stress and how to intentionally employ coping strategies.  

Look no further for an excellent and affordable resource to educate your staff about caregiver burnout.  Reach out to Laura Ellen via the link below to receive complimentary access to AGE-u-cate's REVEAL Aging one-hour device-enabled course "Preventing Caregiver Burnout."

Your feedback on the need for additional topics is invaluable as AGE-u-cate continues to plan for future courses.  Follow this QR code to participate in our 4 question survey.  Thank you!

RA Survey






Free Demo

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Topics: Caregiver Burnout, front line staff

Post COVID Long Term Care Reform

Posted by Julie Boggess on May 18, 2020 7:11:37 PM
The COVID-19 pandemic must inspire significant changes in how long term care is treated and resourced.
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Topics: Senior Care Professionals, aging services, compassionate touch, aging, long term care, support, Work, front line staff, reform, COVID

Collaboration - Producing Creative Solutions in Senior Care

Posted by Pam Brandon on May 2, 2017 2:34:25 PM

Our hyper competitive, profit driven business world often scoffs at the idea of collaboration.  I supposed I'm naive, but I want to think that those in senior care are more passionate and compassionate about working with others for the greater good.  I still believe this is true for most of us.  Working well with others almost always comes back to us ten fold.  This is true in life and business.

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Topics: The Faith Community, The Family Caregiver, Senior Care Professionals, Senior Care, dementia, elder care, families, Master Trainers, front line staff, AGE-u-cate Training Instite

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