Mom, Apple Pie-and Communication
By Richard L. Peck, Editor
Like Mom and apple pie, one of the great verities of life is that communication is good. How often have you heard that the solution to a problem is better communication? Who hasn’t been accused by a spouse or close friend of failing to communicate, and felt terrible for it? (C’mon, admit it.) And, for you movie fans, remember what happened to poor “Cool Hand Luke” and his failure to communicate?

At Medquest Communications, we joke routinely about how difficult it is for us, as a reasonably small staff, to live up to our name. We can say one thing, though: We’ve found a way to honor the concept of communication in this issue of Nursing Homes/Long Term Care Management.

First, you’ll note our 2002 OPTIMA Award winner. This brave facility-Bortz Health Care of Traverse City, Michigan-organized itself to confront one of the more disturbing phenomena in nursing home resident care: sundowner’s syndrome. This facility’s staff developed ways to get through to residents who become agitated and difficult to manage during sunset hours, keep them engaged and occupied, and help them feel reasonably comfortable during a stressful time of day. One moral of this story is that one-on-one communication can go a long way, even under such trying circumstances.

You will further note a twin set of articles on the role of communications technology in long-term care-in preventing lawsuits and the tragedies that inspire them, and in enhancing resident independence.

Finally, you will note some strange e-mail addresses at the end of our articles. This is a new exercise in communication with you, our readers. Time and again we hear from authors about how readers by the dozen have called or e-mailed them about their articles. For a publisher, this is nice to hear. We would, however, like to hear more directly from readers about what you read in the magazine-what you like, what you dislike, what you would like to see more of. These e-mail communications will be forwarded automatically to the authors, but will make a side trip to us on the way. You can be sure we will scrutinize each and every one. Please take advantage of this new opportunity to communicate, and you can reach me at peck0902@nursinghomesmagazine.com. NH

Our thanks to our OPTIMA 2002 judges:
Ian Cordes, President
West Palm Beach, Florida
John R. Pratt, Director
Long-Term Care Management Institute
Standish, Maine
Lawrence Gelfand, Executive Vice-President
Daughters of Israel Geriatric Center
West Orange, New Jersey
Robin Storey, RN, BSN, FACDONA
Director of Program Development and
Quality Improvement
BJC Health System
St. Louis, Missouri
Leah Klusch, Executive Director
The Alliance Training Center, Inc.
Alliance, Ohio

Topics: Articles