By: Lauryn Statham
Steve Moran, the founder of Senior Living Foresight, wrote an article expressing his thoughts on how it seems that most senior living places have “thrown in the towel” when it comes to life enrichment, we, at Bel Aire Senior Living have not. We offer a life of variety and quality. We continue to uphold that standard while we move through this trying time. This article is a good example of what we should be remembering and upholding, along with some good advice on how to improve.
So where is our focus as senior living providers? Moran says , at the top of many websites, and in many cases dominating the website, was COVID-19. While I think it is critical to address the issue, I am completely convinced that when senior living prospects land on a senior living website they are not primarily looking for information on COVID-19. Or even how that community is addressing COVID-19. They are there to solve a problem for themselves or someone they love. On our website we don’t talk about our COVID policies that are in place. We, of course, have policies to keep the residents safe, but we do not focus on that aspect because our residents and their families have enough to worry about. Families need to find a home that can care for their loved one and can show the resident that there is still happiness in their future.
Here at Bel Aire we truly care about our residents’ physical, mental and emotional health. While COVID-19 is widely affecting us, we choose to focus on reminding our residents that this is their home. We do not ignore the situation and we do have precautions in place. However, it is the employees who wear the masks, not the residents. The virus is confusing and troubling enough and if we had them quarantined in their rooms, then they would not be receiving the care that every human needs and wants, and we would have to be considered as throwing in the towel. This sets us apart from many in our industry.
We help our residents create their lifestyle. We improve their quality of life. Moran tells us that the appeal of senior living is supposed to be a lifestyle/living experience that allows older people to have amazing last chapters of their lives. By providing them the ability to create, change the world, make new friends, and interact with old friends. We agree with him fully. Bel Aire has been so good about focusing on what is really important for our residents. We have amazing activities and events. We keep them social and we stay involved in their lives to ensure that they are even enjoying this change in atmosphere.
Moran speaks of a few things to improve upon, which we love. There is…this notion, that maybe we have even bought into the idea that, because of COVID-19, home is safer than senior living. We can become that safer home. A better home. It is very important to know how safe an option senior living is. Yes, there is a virus. Yes, it can be scary. While it may seem that keeping our loved ones safe at home will keep them alive longer, we need to remember the importance of social activities and the feeling of independence is what actually will make that happen. We need to be publishing our success stories on our websites. We need to invite feedback. Most of all, we must show that we are willing to be that special place deserving of our beloved residents with whom we spend time, create, and change the world.