JOLIET, Ill. — Presence Saint Joseph Medical Center this week will bring together nurses and nursing assistants from eight local Skilled Nursing Facilities for a Care Transitions Summit in an effort to further the health and well-being of our community.
Approximately 900 SNF direct care staff are expected to take part in the skills days to hone their basic clinical skills. Attendees will rotate through learning stations staffed by educators from the medical center and each of the nursing facilities to review skills such as preventing falls, checking vital signs, wound care, monitoring high- and low-blood sugar, and proper care of Foley catheters.
“No single nursing home had the capacity to conduct training on this scale on their own,” explained PSJMC case management director Carrie Telschow. “But by bringing together facilities that are typically competitors and combining their resources with the expertise of the medical center, we can share best practices that put the needs of the patient first.”
Presence Saint Joseph has taken the lead on coordinating care and building partnerships with many of the area’s nursing facilities.
Last year, PSJMC gathered nurses, social workers and administrators from different long-term care facilities together with hospital personnel to set standards for smoother transitions and hand-offs from one facility to another.
“The enthusiasm and commitment to improving the care of nursing home patients is really gratifying,” says PSJMC hospitalist James Wright, MD. “Our skilled nursing facility partners are genuinely interested in working with the hospital and with each other to tackle and solve common problems.”
The skills seminar is the collaborative’s next step towards their shared goal of reducing patient readmissions by increasing education and resources for common diagnoses seen in nursing facilities such as congestive heart failure, diabetes, urinary tract infections, and pneumonia.
“Maintaining open communication with each of the long-term care facilities in the area is critical,” says Telschow.
“If it was my family member, I’d feel confident knowing that their transition to a nursing home following their hospital stay at Saint Joe’s will be seamless with the same high-quality care transitioning as well.”