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Abstract

As the senior population continues to age, long-term care is positioned for growth and care recipients are demanding more person-centered care. While long-term care leaders may understand and believe in the value of person-centered care, sometimes operationalizing practices to ensure its delivery can be challenging. Using an ethnographic approach, over three years, 159 long-term care administrator-in-training practicum students each lived as a resident for 24 hours in a nursing home. Following the experience, using the Picker Institute’s framework, each participant identified and justified an Always Experience® – an optimal experience they believed should routinely occur for every long-term care resident. They then developed an action plan that identified several specific operational practices and measures to ensure that Always Experiences® could always occur for residents. A thematic analysis of these Always Experience® action plans was conducted. As a result, six amalgam exemplar Always Experience® action plans – for Admissions, Care Planning, Care, Dining, Activities, and Responsiveness – with desired objectives, specific operational practices, and relevant measures to evaluate outcomes were developed. These easy-to-implement action plans can help long-term care administrators put necessary practices into place to ensure they are consistently delivering high quality, patient-centered care to long-term care residents.

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