OMNI homes showing impressive successes in key quality areas

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Team members proving to be champions at restraint reduction, eliminating pressure ulcers and increased locomotion

OMNI Health Care long-term care homes are showing favourable results in key quality areas, according to the latest data. These areas include restraint reduction, eliminating pressure ulcers and improved resident locomotion.

For the second straight year, Village Green has eliminated restraints at the Greater Napanee long-term care home. Village Green clinical care co-ordinator Mary Lee Turcotte has worked in other long-term care homes but says OMNI’s focus on restraint reduction has been an eye-opener. And it’s a part of the corporate and home culture she has embraced.

Having all staff members buy in to the importance of keeping the home restraint-free has depended upon staff members from all departments being educated about restraint reduction, she says.

Village Green is the only one of OMNI’s 18 long-term care homes with no residents using daily physical restraints. Ontario long-term care homes have an average of 9.3 per cent of residents using daily physical restraints.

Physical restraints, which are only used when families insist, refer to devices such as wheelchair seat belts, restrictive lap tables and bed rails. Physical restraints negatively impact people’s quality of life, and OMNI long-term care homes try to dissuade their usage.

With no residents using restraints at Village Green, staff members are extra vigilant to watch people who are at high risk of falling. Wheelchairs of at-risk residents are fitted with special alarms that sound should they try to get up.

There are other interventions to reduce the risk of residents falling.

“You can make sure that beds at nighttime are in low positions and there are bed pads beside the beds. You can make sure that staff are diligent in their hourly rounds,” Turcotte says.

A major success at Burnbrae Gardens has been eliminating new Stage 2 to 4 pressure ulcers. This has been achieved by closely monitoring residents and proactively addressing issues, says Lesley Dale, the Campbellford home’s director of care.

A Stage 1 pressure ulcer refers to a rash or reddening of skin. Pressure ulcers that are Stage 2 and higher refer to areas of skin that have become lacerated. Dale says being proactive is the best defence against pressure ulcers, which can have a negative impact on a person’s quality of life.

“Prevention is first and foremost, but if you see something, it’s crucial to be proactive,” she says, adding front-line staff members are champions at wound prevention.

“I really admire their attention to detail. The first sign (of a pressure ulcer) and they’re quick to be proactive. They will report anything that they see, no matter how small, so we can address it right away.”

Physiotherapy programs and providing residents with assistive mobility devices are attributed to increased locomotion among residents at West Lake Terrace, says the home’s administrator and clinical care co-ordinator Neil Peterson.

With increased locomotion, residents are also experiencing fewer falls and less agitation, he adds.

According to the latest data from OMNI’s quality indicator chart, 21.05 per cent of the Prince Edward County long-term care home’s residents have experienced improved locomotion, the highest number among the organization’s 18 long-term care homes.

The provincial benchmark for improved locomotion is 13.2 per cent.

Locomotion refers to a person’s ability to get from one place to another independently by walking or using an assistive device such as a wheelchair or walker.

Peterson says many residents have moved into West Lake Terrace ambulatory, but their participation in activities and quality of life improved once they began using assistive devices.

“The reason they have more mobility in the wheelchair is because they don’t have any fear of falling, so their activity level increased even though they went to a wheelchair.”

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