Green House Blog

LeadingAge Conference 2015 Highlights

 

IMG_1331The LeadingAge Conference last week in Boston was attended by over 8,000 participants!  It is one of the largest conference for aging services professionals.  The Green House Project team attends every year and also participates as an exhibitor.   We enjoyed seeing many of our Green House adopters and friends in long term care.

Enjoy the story below from Dr. Eleanor Barbera of McKnight’s, she visited the Leonard Florence Center for Living Green House homes and has written about The Green House Project in the past.

via: McKnight’s

Despite the diversity of the events I attended during my brief visit to the LeadingAge convention in Boston last week, a theme clearly emerged. The thread that ran through the varied offerings was well-being.

Retaining staff

In researcher and consultant Joanne L. Smikle, PhD‘s talk on staff retention, rather than focusing on why employees are leaving, she looked instead at why they stay.

Based on her studies of long-term care organizations, she found that “if the leadership of the organization lacks passion, you will have trouble with retention and commitment.”

Click here to continue reading.

Reducing Readmissions and Healthcare Costs: The Green House Solution

In a recent issue of McKnight’s, I saw this headline – “Reducing readmissions should be No. 1 priority for reducing healthcare costs, quality experts say.”    That was a key conclusion of a recent online poll from 300 members of the American Society for Quality (ASQ) , which describes itself as the “largest network of quality resources and experts in the world” and includes prominent long-term care quality consultants.

It doesn’t take a quality expert to realize that reducing preventable readmissions is a great way to reduce healthcare costs.  By definition, “preventable” means wasted money.  In addition to saving money, reducing readmissions improves the quality of life for Elders, by minimizing the stress and disruption hospital admission causes.

Another article in McKnights from a couple of months ago suggests that pressure ulcer stats are the most reliable indicator of the likely readmission rate from a particular nursing home.  Based on an analysis of data from 4,000 hospitals, HSR: Health Services Research found that pressure ulcer prevalence in particular predicts whether a nursing home will readmit residents.

Can Green House homes help reduce readmissions?  The answer is a resounding “yes!”  In preliminary research (a complete study will be available later this year from the THRIVE research team), traditional nursing homes had readmission rates that were 7 points higher than Green House homes.  A related study found that the incidence of pressure ulcers in Green House homes was “significantly lower” than the incidence in traditional homes.

The bottom line?  The THRIVE research team concluded that the “overall difference in total Medicare and Medicaid costs per resident over 12 months (sum of hospitalization and daily care costs (RUG costs)) ranged from approximately $1,300 to $2,300 less for residents in Green House vs. traditional nursing homes” depending on RUG rates in the state.

Convivium: Good Food and Good Company leads to Good Outcomes

Mealtime is an important part of The Green House day. We even have a name for it, “convivium”. This term describes good food, good company and good conversation. In every Green House home, there is an open kitchen where food is cooked in the home, and it is served around one large table to create a feeling of belonging. Smells of delicious food waft through the air, and the dining room table is filled with conversation as elders, staff members and visitors sit together and form an intentional community. This normalized environment creates not only a sense of well-being, but also has a positive clinical impact. Watch the below short video to hear what a dietitian from a Green House home says about her experience:

At the Table: Dining and Nutrition in The Green House Model (2 mins 33 secs) from The Green House Project on Vimeo.

According to a recent article in McKnight’s Long Term Care News, “’Undernutrition’ is the most common dietary problem related to dementia… This refers to insufficient intake of calories, protein or other nutrients. It affects up to 30% of residents in long-term care facilities…” The article goes on to talk about how improving the environment and increasing staff education can help to improve elder nutrition. Through intentional design and deep education, Green House homes have seen positive outcomes and stories that demonstrate the value of focusing on food and mealtime.

Dr. Bill Thomas, founder of The Green House model, has always seen food as central to how we connect as human beings. As our physical needs increase to a skilled nursing level—this deep human factor does not change. In this short video below, Dr. Thomas shares his vision for “convivium”. By creating an environment of deep knowing where we honor an elder’s preferences and natural rhythms, issues like “undernutrition” will dissipate.

Convivium from The Green House Project on Vimeo.

McKnight's Features Green House Pioneer, Steve McAlilly

A recent profile in McKnight’s Long Term Care News, features Steve McAlilly, CEO of Mississippi Methodist Senior Services, the first Green House homes. “Thanks to McAlilly’s nurturing, the Green House model has grown from concept to phenomenon.”

The article profiles Steve’s upbringing, and the winding path that brought him to the helm of Methodist Senior Services in Tupelo, MS.  It has been 10 years since the first Green House homes opened, and it is astounding to look back at all the factors that aligned to make this dream a reality.  McAlilly says the “great adventure” of the Green House taught him how to “move forward without knowing all the answers.”

Chief Operating Officer,  Susan Frazier, decribes the leadership gifts that have contributed to the success of Steve’s organization and The Green House model, “He demonstrated you can work through the regulatory challenges, the capital challenges,” Frazier says. She calls him a “profound leader” who is warm and gracious, and known by all the direct care staff.

To read the full profile in McKnight’s >>

 

 

Green House project, Leonard Florence Center for Living, honored by McKnight's Long Term News

Leonard Florence Center for Living in Chelsea, Mass., is a prime example of the revolutionary potential of The Green House model. Leonard Florence Center for living includes homes that employ advanced assistive technology to allow individuals immobilized by ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) and multiple sclerosis, to live more independently. Their innovations were recently honored by McKnight’s technology award, “Boston’s Chelsea Jewish Foundation won the top prize in the High Tech/High Touch category of McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards — Connect Our World.”

Congratulations to Leonard Florence Center for Living for this honor and thank you to McKnight’s Long Term Care News, for recognizing the power of The Green House model to create high touch, high tech environments that result in meaningful lives and excellent outcomes. click here to read the full article

 

Green House project, Leonard Florence Center for Living, honored by McKnight’s Long Term News

Leonard Florence Center for Living in Chelsea, Mass., is a prime example of the revolutionary potential of The Green House model. Leonard Florence Center for living includes homes that employ advanced assistive technology to allow individuals immobilized by ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) and multiple sclerosis, to live more independently. Their innovations were recently honored by McKnight’s technology award, “Boston’s Chelsea Jewish Foundation won the top prize in the High Tech/High Touch category of McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards — Connect Our World.”

Congratulations to Leonard Florence Center for Living for this honor and thank you to McKnight’s Long Term Care News, for recognizing the power of The Green House model to create high touch, high tech environments that result in meaningful lives and excellent outcomes. click here to read the full article