A hopeful day at LeadingAge 2018

Here’s my latest article on McKnight’s Long-Term Care News:


A hopeful day at LeadingAge 2018

I headed to the 2018 LeadingAge convention last week looking for a fix of long-term care enthusiasm and that’s exactly what I got.

I met up with old colleagues, put faces to voices I’d spoken to for years and wandered through the expo hall catching snippets of conversations that might be exciting only to long-term care professionals.


Armed with a large cup of black coffee, I attended an early morning seminar on the Patient-Directed Payment Model (PDPM), mostly so I’d know what everyone was freaking out about at work. “Are there any payment adjustments for residents with behavioral health problems?” I inquired of the speakers. “No,” came the reply.

Facilities will continue to have to manage residents with anxiety, substance abuse and other difficult and time-consuming behaviors without financial remuneration through PDPM. For those looking for immediate answers, consulting psychologists can be a good resource for staff training and local associations may be able to offer educational sessions on specific topics across facilities.

Team building

I participated in a session offered by Christopher Ridenhour, GFN entitled, “The Other Voice: Race, Class, Culture and the Other ‘Isms’ in Aging Services.”

“And you wonder why we have a staffing crisis,” he said, pointing out, for example, that attendees walking briskly through the conference hall without acknowledging one another were likely to be doing the same thing with their staff members back at home.

Ridenhour emphasized that all workers, regardless of their race, age or any other characteristic, want to be recognized and appreciated.

The session included practice exercises that highlighted commonalities between participants. I left with a new friend with whom I “LinkedIn” the next day. We were born in different countries, work in different LTC roles and have almost a decade between us, but given the directive to “tell each other your life story in thirty seconds,” we found the kind of common ground that any employer would want for their team members.

Montessori for staff

The theme of connection was echoed in a session offered by psychologist Cameron Camp, Ph.D., and his colleagues at the Center for Applied Research in Dementia on teaching Montessori techniques to staff members.

For the entire article, visit: A hopeful day at LeadingAge 2018

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