Good Samaritan Society staff members love being an integral part of the cities and counties they work and live in.
'Really important' community services
Many times, the services the Society is providing can’t be found for miles. Good Samaritan Society – Battle Lake in Minnesota offers skilled nursing care, assisted living, and senior living apartments.
“There isn’t a ton of senior living options in our area. What we provide in our community is really important because otherwise people would have to travel 20, 30, 40 miles to receive care in a setting like that,” Casey Ward, administrator at Battle Lake, says.
No one needs to travel outside of the area for outpatient rehabilitation either, Casey says it’s happening right here. All this makes his building a go-to facility for people in Battle Lake and residents in Otter Tail County.
“We have a beautiful overlook of west Battle Lake and we have a dock and a pontoon. We’re just a very beautiful, unique campus,” Casey says.
It’s one of the reasons why the senior living apartments are always full. With nice weather on the way, Casey is looking forward to taking on the role of pontoon captain soon.
“Favorite part of the job description for the summer,” Casey says.
National Skilled Nursing Care Week
During National Skilled Nursing Care Week, Casey is sharing his gratitude for the caregivers who are making residents feel special and for all the families trusting the Society with their loved ones.
“It brings a lot of value to the community and the community is so grateful. We’re so grateful for the ways they show it to us,” Casey says.
Throughout the pandemic, local grocery stores have been dropping off flowers to brighten up residents’ rooms. Families are also bringing treats to say thank you to staff members.
“The community has really done a lot,” Casey says.
While he admits battling coronavirus in Battle Lake has been challenging, the location is in a good spot now thanks to safety precautions and the COVID-19 vaccine.
“There were times where it was pretty tough but everybody pitched in to make it work,” Casey says. “We’re all in this together. We’re all in the boat together.”
Hopefully propelling our way towards an end to the pandemic. Casey says new options for visitation are bringing hope. Vaccinated residents and visitors can get together with fewer restrictions.
“We’re starting to see more and more people in the building. It’s just nice to see all that traffic again,” Casey says.
Looking back at skilled nursing care
This past year has brought a lot of changes to skilled nursing facilities. Rochelle Rindels, Society Vice President of Nursing and Clinical Services, says the organization continues to adapt to meet the needs of residents."
Right now with our vaccination rates, our facilities are some of the safest places to be,” Rochelle says.
Safe places for people to live, stay active and receive care.
“What we’ve seen in today’s skilled nursing facility is vastly different from what we’ve seen 10-20 years ago. I think that ranges across a variety of things from the services that are offered in a nursing facility to the complexity of the resident or the patient that we care for,” Rochelle says.
Those residents will have even more amenities at their fingertips in the future.
“We’re kind of on the edge of virtual care and telehealth and what that looks like in nursing homes. I think in the next 5-7 years, we’ll see a change in how care is delivered in a nursing facility,” Rochelle says.
Right now, you can count on a familial atmosphere wherever the Society is caring for others.
“The one thing that hasn’t changed about nursing facilities is the sense of community that is created between residents and also the relationship between nurses and residents. They become like your family members. You’re sharing birthdays and anniversaries with them and you get to know their immediate family and loved ones just like your own family,” Rochelle says.
'Thank you for trusting us'
For those celebrating skilled nursing facilities, their staff and their residents this week, Rochelle says thank you.
“We are highlighting and appreciating our skilled nursing facilities and the employees and residents and family members that are involved in those facilities. We thank you for trusting us with the care of your loved ones and really being a part of creating community and moving forward day to day in our locations,” Rochelle says.