Lac qui Parle Health Network WINS 2013 INNOVATION AWARD

Local senior services organization honored for innovative program at the Aging Services of Minnesota Institute

Pictured:  Jon Riewer, Aging Services Board Chair; Gail Ochsendorf, JMHS Activities Director; Nancy St. Sauver, LQPHN program coordinator; Deb Sather, JMHS MDS Coordinator; Julie Turnberg, JMHS Director of Older Adult Services; Sara West, JMHS Rehab Nurse; Judy Dahl, JMHS Assistant DON;  Jodi Speicher, Aging Services Awards & Recognition Committee Chair and Gayle Kvenvold, President & CEO of Aging Services.

Pictured: Jon Riewer, Aging Services Board Chair; Gail Ochsendorf, JMHS Activities Director; Nancy St. Sauver, LQPHN program coordinator; Deb Sather, JMHS MDS Coordinator; Julie Turnberg, JMHS Director of Older Adult Services; Sara West, JMHS Rehab Nurse; Judy Dahl, JMHS Assistant DON; Jodi Speicher, Aging Services Awards & Recognition Committee Chair and Gayle Kvenvold, President & CEO of Aging Services.

The Lac qui Parle Health Network a collaboration of Johnson Memorial Health Services, Appleton Area Health Services and Madison Lutheran Home has received a 2013 Leading Change Innovation Award from Aging Services of Minnesota. The Innovation Awards showcase the very best innovative programs and ideas in older adult services in the state of Minnesota. The Aging Services awards are among the highest honors for aging services organizations in Minnesota.

The facilities worked together to combine restorative nursing, or rehab, with the fun and interesting activities to encourage residents to exercise and follow through on their rehabilitation. The program, dubbed Putting the FUN in Rehab Nursing, is a first-of-its-kind combination in the country.

Faced with unenthusiastic, reluctant participation in rehab therapy by residents, The Lac qui Parle Network of care centers – Johnson Memorial Health Services, Dawson; Appleton Area Health Services and Madison Lutheran Home searched quality improvement organizations throughout the country for a model they could adapt.

“We contacted other facilities and searched online for ideas on how to do this, and we were unable to find anything,” said program coordinator Nancy St. Sauver. “So we decided to create our own.”

The result was an innovative coordinated program that took residents’ past interested such as fishing, bowling, gardening or sports to create a collection of fun exercises around each interest area.

“The results were stunning,” noted St. Sauver. Soon the residents were looking forward to the social interconnection, friendly competition and feelings of accomplishment. Quality indicator scores improved, residents experienced an improved ability to move around the room and range of motion.

Representatives from the care centers shared their experience at the three-day conference in Minneapolis last week. In addition they developed a toolkit to share the program with other senior care organizations.