BSO experience has helped PSW enhance resident-centred care

Pictured from left to right, Riverview Manor BSO team lead Becky Dennie, PSW Nicole Munro and RPN Carly Kenny.

Learning about each resident’s individual history can help team members prevent agitation in residents with dementia

PETERBOROUGH, Ont. – Since joining the Behavioural Supports Ontario (BSO) team at Riverview Manor, personal support worker (PSW) Nicole Munro says the most important thing she has learned is how to better provide resident-centred care.

The BSO team works with residents living with dementia who are exhibiting responsive behaviours. The main goal of BSO teams in long-term care homes is to prevent the triggers that may cause residents to become agitated, largely by learning about each person’s history.

“I’ve learned how to work with resistive residents, and learning about them individually, and how to deal with their behaviours individually, rather than as a group,” Nicole tells The OMNIway.

Nicole says she has seen many of the interventions the team uses work. Doll therapy, pet therapy, colouring activities and one-to-one time are some of the tools the team has successfully used to curb responsive behaviours at the Peterborough long-term care home.

“I like learning about residents’ triggers, what triggers them and trying to find out what brings them to that behaviour so it can be prevented,” says Nicole, who adds she joined the Riverview BSO team because she has an interest in the relationship between mental health and dementia.

Riverview Manor BSO team lead Becky Dennie says Nicole’s top strength is her communication skills.

“Nicole is able to spend one-to-one time with residents, and she has very strong listening and communication skills when working with people with dementia,” Becky says.

BSO is a provincial initiative that’s enhancing quality of life for seniors affected by dementia and other conditions that can cause agitation. The funding, which is provided to long-term care homes through the province’s 14 Local Health Integration Networks, is largely put towards staff education.

– More to come

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