Restorative care is a term that is often misunderstood or incorrectly defined as rehabilitation therapy. And while therapy and restorative nursing complement each other, they are not one and the same.
The purpose of restorative care is to maintain a person’s highest level of physical, mental, and psychosocial function in order to prevent declines that impact quality of life. In the Smith Care Center (SCC), restorative care is a part of every aspect of a resident’s daily life. Care includes, but is not limited to: range of motion (active or passive), ambulation, dining assistance, locomotion or wheelchair use, fall prevention, our Sit-to- Stand program, and more.
In addition to therapies, the restorative team also addresses residents’ many adaptive devices, such as skin protectors, night lights, chair pad alarms, and pendants. While not every SCC resident receives this service, since January 2016, an average of 58 percent of our residents benefitted from restorative care.
How exactly does the process work?
There is no set path that leads to restorative care. However, most residents receive it after therapy determines that they have reached their maximum potential. Following this determination, the therapist develops a resident’s restorative care plan and shares it with the Restorative Nurse, Lauren Krause, who ultimately implements the program. From there, it is the restorative care team’s job to retain the resident’s ability level. Restorative aides help to provide the care, follow through on programs, and track and report any changes.
How is SCC’s Restorative Care Team different?
Most skilled nursing facilities teach their staff some form of restorative care, and all employees on the floor are tasked with providing this care. However, SCC is unique in that we have a dedicated team that specializes in restorative care and works closely with the therapy department. “The communication between our department and therapy is really amazing,” Lauren says.
Additionally, while Medicare specifies that restorative care programs run at least six days per week, the Smith Care Center offers its residents seven days per week. Lauren leads the program alongside her team of restorative aides — Dennis Ortiz, Sheila Strahorn, and Nancy Chan (not pictured). When you visit SCC, you’ll be sure to see Lauren and her team in action. If you have questions regarding restorative care, contact Lauren at 941-361-7361.