Guest Column: Hillel Lodge is deeply committed to person-centred care

By Ted Cohen

Hillel Lodge

Canada is facing unprecedented demands on our healthcare system. Nowhere are these pressures felt more acutely than in seniors’ services and long-term care. With an aging population, more vulnerable people than ever require long-term care. Like others in the sector, the Bess and Moe Greenberg Family Hillel Lodge is experiencing these pressures, but because of outstanding professional staff, deeply committed volunteers, and generous contributors, Hillel Lodge is very well positioned to meet the needs of our residents, whose care and safety remain our number one priority.

This year, 2020, marks an exciting time for Hillel Lodge. In 2019, we held extensive consultations with our residents, their families, and community leaders to learn everything we could to ensure we are prepared to meet the evolving long-term care needs of our community. During the consultations, we shared how Hillel Lodge and other leading long-term care homes are embracing new ways of meeting the unique and individual needs of each resident. This care approach is called “person-centred care.”

Person-centred care received enthusiastic endorsement from our stakeholders and has been adopted as the cornerstone of our vision and strategy at Hillel Lodge. As Arlene Rosenbloom, president of Hillel Lodge, stated recently, “Developing the person-centred care approach for our residents is the main reason I embraced the opportunity to serve as president. It is an honour and enormous responsibility to be a leader and proponent for a model for change in our long-term care community. Adopting this approach is critical because of the increasing demands on our sector. I, and all of us at Hillel Lodge, take this responsibility very seriously and look forward to implementing this approach to the benefit of all our residents.”

Hillel Lodge decided to adopt the best elements from the person-centred care models we evaluated. We are adapting them to our unique situation at Hillel Lodge. Working in partnership with the prominent and well-respected Research Institute for Aging, Hillel Lodge will preserve the unique features that make the Lodge a valued resource to our community while evolving to respond to the changing needs of today’s residents.

Hillel Lodge is home to 121 individuals. Each has their own history, interests, and preferences. Person-centred care demands that we continually seek new ways to meet the individual needs of our residents. As we implement this approach, residents can expect new services, care options, and activities that respond to a wider variety of interests and capabilities.

Through consultations with stakeholders, it became clear that the person-centred care approach is wanted and will be well received in our community. While we will implement these changes as quickly as possible, we must acknowledge that person-centred care is a journey of continuous incremental change that will not only impact the services we offer but also will begin to change how aging is viewed and how to honour and empower our seniors. We will implement these changes responsibility and as quickly as possible.

As CEO of Hillel Lodge, it is an honour to help those requiring long-term care live full and engaged lives. I view the adoption of person-centred care as critical as we strive to remain at the forefront of long-term care.