Family Health West has been the area’s premier provider of Alzheimer’s care since the mid-1980’s.
We have two facilities that provide care for individuals afflicted with Alzheimer’s or Dementia related disorders.
The Main Street Experience, our social model for Alzheimer’s care, is a family environment concept. It features simulated Main Street shops, such as a general store and flower shop, and homelike areas with a fireplace, dining area, etc. Using this model, we connect to pleasant experiences and memories of the past and add fun to the present.
At both facilities, we use our social model approach that is based on positives: focusing on wellness, enhancing the environment to assist each patient to improve and to prevent declines in function. This ultimately provides our patients with a higher quality of life, dignity and self-esteem.
Staff members provide individualized attention to meet patient needs through one-on-one interactions. This can range from a simple hug or pat on the hand, or soaking feet in warm water followed by a foot massage. In the social model, the medical aspects of patient care are still provided with the same degree of excellence, but now care includes a social and fun aspect.
Care is provided with compassion and concern for the dignity and self-esteem of the individual. Instead of immediately giving medications for behavioral problems, calming interventions are tried, i.e., massaging hands with soothing lotion, playing calming music or redirecting the patient to other activities or conversation. A gentle “best friends” approach is used. By using the social model, we have been able to decrease medications, improve patient functioning and quality of life, and redirect the frustrations so often evident with Alzheimer’s disease. The success of our social model has surpassed our expectations.