The Common Sense Series


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Help Me!! Help Me!! Help Me!!! - The Common Sense Approach to Challenging Behavior

In many cases, facility staff have not been properly trained to deal with challenging behavior. As a result, staff continue to simply react to behavior, as opposed to preventing or minimizing the behavior. This session will teach assessment techniques that identify variables that predict and maintain problem behavior, and improve the effectiveness and efficiency of behavioral support plans. Using humor, Cat will cover common sense, "down-to-earth" techniques for dealing with specific behavioral issues. Both federal and state surveys are now taking a closer look at behavior management programs in facilities. Will your programs and interventions stand up to that scrutiny?

Session Length: Choice of either 1.5 or 3.0 hours

Intended Audience: All disciplines; all settings

I Don't Understand What You Are Saying! - The Common Sense Approach to Communicating With Elders Who Have Dementia

Are you "swag?" Would you say you are "hip," "cool," or "down?" It seems the word describing one's "hipness" or "coolness" seems to change almost daily. If it's hard for you to keep up with the nuances of our language, and know what someone is talking about (especially when conversing with someone from a different generation), how do you think an elder feels? How do you think these words confuse and confound an elder with dementia?! We continue to use words and phrases that an elder could not possibly recognize or "connect" with, and then document that they are "unable to understand or comprehend." This session takes a humorous look at our everyday communication with elders, while teaching effective, common-sense strategies that have proven successful with those who have dementia.


Session Length: 1.5 hours


Intended Audience: All disciplines; all settings


It's Everybody's Business!! - The Common Sense Approach to Customer Service and Marketing

Why market your facility? Why pay attention to public relations? Easy answer: SURVIVAL!! Who should do it....the administrator...the social worker...or everyone in the building? There are more nursing centers than ever before - all with attractive features and numerous amenities. Additionally, more and more funding is being provided to states and communities for "alternative care." The general public has become more educated, discerning, and demanding. How does the community (the public) perceive your building and staff? Are you the "facility of choice" in your area? Come to this session to learn 12 Winning Techniques for Handling Inquiries, as well as specific techniques in customer relations and service. Learn the humorous, "moments of truth" in everyday practice that can result in a positive or negative opinion of your care, service, and staff.


Session Length: 1.5 hours


Intended Audience: All disciplines; all settings


Keep 'Em Busy ALL the Time?? Really?! - The Common Sense Approach to Activity Programming

"We get our residents up early, get them dressed and out of bed into the living area. If they stay in their room, it will look like we are not doing our job...They are supposed to look busy and active at all times." REALLY!!?? Exactly where did that philosophy come from?? That's the way it was done years ago! Absolutely NOTHING in the CMS surveyor guidance intimates that perspective. And guess what? We have evolved and learned so much more regarding the provision of services that positively impact an elder's quality of life. Activity programming should be based on an elder's preferences, interests and customary routine. You may be assured that if an individual is 85 years old, has 7-9 different diagnoses, and is on 9 or more different medications, they just might want a little more voice in how they spend their day... This session will provide basic instruction on the interdisciplinary approach to activities. Learn what CMS requires, expects and what activity programming should "look like" at this time in an elder's life.


Session Length: Choice of either 1.5 or 3.0 hours


Intended Audience: Activities/Recreation, Nursing, Social Services in LTC


Strategies that Work! - The Common Sense Approach to One-to-One Programming

CMS states that "One-to-One Programming" refers to programming provided to residents who will not, or cannot, effectively plan their own activity pursuits, or residents needing specialized or extended programs to enhance their overall daily routine and activity pursuit needs. The concept of individualized intervention has evolved over the years. By necessity, and response to a changing population, most activity/recreation professionals have abandoned generic interventions and large-group activities that include elders with different levels of strengths and needs. In their place, individualized interventions and one-to-one programming have been developed. This concept results in a total facility, total team approach to the delivery of activity services. Come and learn as Cat shares the benefits and "mechanics" of one-to-one programming; dynamics and implementation; documentation issues; and offers suggestions/insight for successful programming ideas.


Session Length: 1.5 hours


Intended Audience: Activities/Recreation, Nursing, Social Services, Therapy in LTC


What Do I Say? - The Common Sense Approach to End-of-Life Care

At the beginning of the 20th century, most people died in their own homes. It is estimated that by 2020 nearly 1 in 2 persons will die in a nursing facility. Nursing homes will become the primary place for dying in this country (Teno, 2003). Our society and culture is in denial of death. When the subject of death is discussed, euphemisms such as "passed away," "expired," or "left this world" are used. Few people actually use the word "died" or "dead." If you are the dying person, knowing that society feels this way, how do you cope with your feelings and the dying process? How does your family deal with the process? This session will teach your staff skills and techniques, empowering them to provide the needed services that can positively impact an elder's end of life - learning how to enrich and improve the quality of life remaining.

 

Session Length: 1.5 hours

 

Intended Audience: All disciplines; all settings


What Were You Thinking??? - The Common Sense Approach to Critical Thinking

"I don't know about you, but I ALWAYS write my first and last name on the heels of my shoes! I also write my name in large, block letters on all of my clothes with a magic marker." If none of us really do this in our own, personal lives, it makes you wonder why these practices are found in almost every nursing facility in the nation. As my Grandma would say, we're not using our noggins! We no longer think for ourselves! We're almost to the point that we don't question anything regarding our policy, practice and process....we just DO it! As with all of her sessions, Cat will utilize humor to teach common sense approaches to critical thinking. Empower your staff to critique, evaluate and THINK about how, and what, we are doing with our elders. Question it!!

 

Session Length: 1.5 hours

 

Intended Audience: All disciplines; all settings


Who Does What and HOW do We Write it?? - The Common Sense Approach to Developing an Interdisciplinary Care Plan

"Care Plans." Are we supposed to have separate, individual-discipline plans for every resident; or are we required to have one comprehensive care plan for each resident? And which care model do we use medical or social; problem-based or needs-based? The debate goes on, the confusion grows, and professionals are now becoming so concerned over writing a care plan that they have no time to implement a realistic, workable care plan. This DVD outlines what CMS actually requires regarding care planning, how we should write the document, who should be involved in the process, and how we can simplify the development of a plan, making it both interdisciplinary and realistic.

 

Session Length: 1.5 hours

 

Intended Audience: All disciplines; Long-Term Care


Writing "I" Format Care Plans - The Common Sense Approach to Meeting Resident Needs

When it comes to "how" nursing homes write resident care plans, it's time to rethink the whole process! It's time for facilities to move away from traditional care planning to a community model that calls for person-centered care planning. This session will address the development of "I" Format Care Plans - a process by which staff write care plans in the first person, as if the elder were speaking directly to them - a process that transforms the "diagnosis" into a real, live person. This process adopts the voice of the elder and expresses his or her needs - from his or her point of view. Front-line staff become enthused and motivated when using this care plan format. It actually "makes sense" to them, and they feel they can implement the plan more effectively. Come and learn a more realistic way to develop and implement care plans.


Session Length: 1.5 hours


Intended Audience: Nursing, Social Services, Activities/Recreation, Dietary, Therapy, Nursing Assistants in LTC


The Art of the Interview - The Common Sense Approach to Interviewing Elders

With the implementation of the MDS 3.0, interviewing has taken on a more significant role in the resident assessment process. CMS states that "all residents capable of any communication should be asked to provide information regarding what they consider to be the most important facets of their lives." There are several MDS 3.0 sections that require direct interview of the resident as the primary source of information (e.g., mood, preferences, pain). CMS further states that "self-report is the single most reliable indicator of these topics and that staff should actively seek information from the resident regarding these specific topic areas." Who should conduct the interviews? What type of individual will be the most effective interviewer? And is it possible to conduct them in a faster manner? In this session, Cat will share CMS guidance, as well as practical, common-sense communication techniques that can be utilized effectively when interviewing elders.

 

Session Length: 1.5 hours

 

Intended Audience: Interdisciplinary Care Team Members; Long Term Care


It's a Mixed-up World Out There! - The Common Sense Approach to Cultural Diversity

Session Length: 1.5 hours

 

Intended Audience: Interdisciplinary Care Team Members; All settings


What's the Problem? - The Common Sense Approach to Problem Solving

Much of what managers and supervisors do is solve problems and make decisions. Often, these individuals do this by simply reacting to situations. Stressed for time and pressured for a quick fix or decision, they tend to rely on "knee-jerk" responses, or fall back on what has seemed to work in the past. They feel that the quickness of a decision is more important than the long-term outcome. There are times when a quick decision is necessary; however, most decisions are not "life or death," and you DO have the time to make the right decision. How do you find the perfect balance of knowing when to make quick and easy decisions, and when to take time for the complex decisions? And what are the steps to problem solving? Join us in this session to learn simple, common sense techniques to approach the problems that arise daily. Just think, your problem may actually be an opportunity!

 

Session Length: 1.5 hours

 

Intended Audience: All disciplines; All settings


The Common Sense Approach to the MDS 3.0

"They" said it would be "easier." "They" said it would take "less time." When does that begin? And how do we get to that point? Help! While most would agree that the MDS 3.0 is a much better document than the previous versions, some facilities are still struggling with the time constraints that are involved. Is it easier than it appears? Are we "stressing" too much? Can we learn to utilize the process to provide better care to our residents? The answer would be a resounding "YES!" Attend this training to learn a common sense approach to the MDS 3.0 and the development of a person-centered comprehensive care plan. Leave with a different perspective of the entire RAI process!


Session Length: 1-Day Stand-Alone Training - 6 hours

 

Intended Audience: Interdisciplinary Care Team Members; Long Term Care

 

Detailed Day Agenda Forwarded Upon Request


It's More Than Scratch 'n Sniff! - The Common Sense Approach to Sensory Stimulation

We all enjoy the world around us through our senses...the sweet, innocent laughter and song of a child; that "first" bite of your favorite dessert; holding hands with the one you love; that "distinctive" smell of SKUNK!! Through those senses, we interpret what we have seen, heard, felt, etc. and act upon that interpretation. For an individual with dementia, the stimuli becomes confusing, frustrating and at times, overwhelming when they cannot interpret correctly, or at all. The purpose of sensory stimulation is to enable a person to overcome these obstacles and experience the pleasures of life through the senses. Did you know that sensory stimulation is more effective if ALL the senses are stimulated, instead of focusing on just one or two? Did you know that a resident's response will be more likely if sensory cues are given in a specific order? Cat will teach participants these techniques as well as others. Participants, through group demonstration, will actually develop specific sensory stimulation activities to take back to their facilities. Come prepared to learn, work, and be STIMULATED!!

 

Session Length:? 1.5 - 2 hours (session may be adjusted to fit specific agendas/schedules)

 

Intended Audience: Activities, recreation, social work, nursing, nursing assistants; All settings


I've Heard that Story Before.... - The Common Sense Approach to Reminiscence

Reminiscence, or remembering the past, is an essential human need. How many times have you looked at someone in your life and started a sentence with, "Remember when we..." or "I remember when..." What if every time you said those words, someone would say, "You already told me that..." How would it make you feel? And would you eventually just stop saying anything to anyone? The positive ability (to recall good things, be prepared for death, and be able to solve problems) and negative ability (to reminisce about sad and profound events) are both significantly associated with psychosocial well-being among the elderly. Additionally, reminiscence can result in improvement of one's comprehension skills, enhancement of self-esteem, and eases the feeling of depression and hopelessness. It can add to the sense of "belonging." In this session, Cat will discuss the types of reminiscence and their utilization/implementation with our elders. From structured, topic-specific reminiscence sessions, to spontaneous, "for the fun of it," individual conversations, participants will learn the correct process and benefit of this wonderful technique. Every person, from the licensed, degreed professionals, to the front-line direct caregiver, should attend this session!

 

Session Length: 1.5 - 2 hours (session may be adjusted to fit specific agendas/schedules)

 

Intended Audience: Activities, recreation, social work, nursing, nursing assistants; All settings


Stop Talking to Everybody Else and Help Me Eat!! - The Common Sense Approach to Assisting with Meals for Residents who Have Dementia

We "take" ("assist" would be a better word, but I don't think that is what we are doing...) an elder who has dementia down to the dining room forty-five minutes before a meal is served and wonder why they "holler" for someone's attention. We sit a tray or plate in front of this same person, but do not provide assistance till many minutes later. In the meantime, the elder has been able to smell the food, see it sitting on the table before them, and watch others eat as they are waiting. When someone does finally arrive to assist them, their food is cold and the "assistant" talks to their co-worker the whole time. What is wrong with this picture??? In this session, Cat will walk participants through our current actions and provide reasonable, common-sense approaches as to how we can make meals more meaningful and enjoyable for our elders. This will be a session you do not want to miss!!

 

Session Length: 1.5 hours

 

Intended Audience: All disciplines; LTC


Documenting for Dollars - Techniques for Activities and Social Services

Everyone knows that we don't get reimbursed by the government for direct social services or activities as entities within themselves. However; both departments can contribute volumes of supportive documentation for facility reimbursement. Do your activity and social service departments know the specific items and MDS codes that place a resident in a certain case-mix category? Do they know the level of intensity necessary for documentation to support the reimbursement and help other departments? And finally, do they know if they need to be doing this? In this session, Cat will address specific MDS 3.0 sections, items, and codes that involve social services and activities. She will be providing detailed instruction and outlining responsibilities for documentation to help support other departments for that desperately needed reimbursement!

 

Session Length: 1.5 hours

 

Intended Audience: Activities/Recreation, Social Services, Nursing; LTC


There's a Cat under My Bed! - The Common Sense Approach to Validation Therapy & Interacting with Residents Who Have Dementia

"No, Ms. Susie, there is NOT a cat under your bed." "No, Mr. Joe, you do NOT have to go to work today...you don't have a job anymore." "No, Mrs. Johnson, your husband is NOT coming today. He's been dead for 10 years!" Why do we keep utilizing the same worn out, broken approach with elders; traumatizing, frustrating, depressing, and angering them further? Would it not be better to use a more effective, successful technique if it were out there? Validation Therapy and similar concepts are actually more successful when communicating with individuals who have dementia. In this very interactive session, Cat will teach participants successful techniques for more effective communication and interaction with elders who have dementia and provide "behavioral" challenges.

 

Session Length: 1 to 1.5 hours (session may be adjusted to fit specific agendas/schedules)

 

Intended Audience: All disciplines; All settings.

 


Cutbacks, Change and Cooties - The Common Sense Approach to Dealing with Stress

When you were a little boy or girl, did someone at one time or another say, "Ooh! You have cooties!" For most of us, we had no idea what a "cootie" was, or whether or not we actually had them," BUT, we knew whatever they were, they were BAD!!! As we got older, we realized that "cooties" were a "pretend" infectious disease given to a child of the opposite sex under the age of ten, usually by another child of the opposite sex, as an insult. As adults, we finally figured out that puberty makes ones permanently immune to cooties! However, at the time, those old "cooties" sure worried us a lot...and caused a lot of stress. We never thought that there would be something out there WORSE than "cooties!" More budget cuts? Tighten our belts?! Figure it out!? Wow! Do you feel like you're going under for the last and final time? Looking for relief somewhere? ANY WHERE? Cities, states, nations, businesses, and individuals are all experiencing budgetary and staffing "cuts." For some, these "cuts," and other changes, can become utter devastation. For others, they confront their losses, make the necessary adjustments, and move on. So what makes the difference, and how can we learn to adjust and succeed? In this very humorous and motivating session, Cat will discuss the challenges we are facing, and offer proven techniques to accept the continuous changes and stress in our lives.

 

Intended Audience: All disciplines; All settings.

 

Session Length: 1 to 1.5 hours (session may be adjusted to fit specific agendas/schedules)


Documentation and Compliance - The Common Sense Approach to Supportive Care Plan Documentation

More and more surveys contain the same wording in regard to documentation: facility "failed to document resident responses/outcomes to identified staff interventions;" facility "failed to provide documented evidence that interdisciplinary care plan has been implemented..." Sound familiar? It seems that our professional staff write so much now, that they rarely get to see the real, live individual for whom they are caring. The components of compliance are: assessment; development of an individualized, person-centered care plan; implementation of said care plan; monitoring of said care plan; and review and/or revision of said care plan. So we write, write, and then write some more...and still get the deficiency or finding. In this session Cat will discuss federal requirements regarding care plan documentation and what this means to each individual discipline and caregiver. She will give common sense suggestions as to how we can write documentation that is both supportive of the plan that has been identified, and reflective of actual delivery of services and care. Don't come dreading a session on documentation! Cat makes the topic lively, fun, and "doable!"...

 

Session Length: 1.5 to 3 hours (session may be adjusted to fit specific agendas/schedules)

 

Intended Audience: Interdisciplinary Care Team, LTC