We all know that communication is key. This is especially true when it comes to senior living. Effectively communicating to residents helps increase their engagement and morale. It is helpful to share things like event calendars and updates with flyers and door hangings. Friendly notes of congratulations or well wishes can also go a long way. When putting together these communications, remember how important things like font size and reminders are.
It is also critical that you regularly communicate with family members. A lot of times, the responsible parties – including children or siblings – cannot be around as much as they would like, and they miss or worry about the resident. By keeping them regularly informed, you can help manage their expectations and curb any potential concerns that may arise.
Here are some ideas to help get you started:
This is something that you are probably already doing (or really should be). For responsible parties that visit often, it is important that you get to know them, too. Take the time to greet them and provide a quick update on their loved one. They should not have to ask you how the resident is doing, and they will appreciate the personalized attention.
Activities and Attendance
Keeping responsible parties up-to-date about upcoming events is another good way to help improve attendance. Many times, they will also bring this up to their loved one to remind and encourage them. After the event, send an email to each family member that lets them know how the event went and whether or not their loved one attended. You can streamline this process by first creating an email template that can be revised for each resident.
Regular Photo Messages
They say that a picture is worth a thousand words, and this is definitely true when it comes to communicating with family members – especially those who are not able to visit regularly or who may have certain concerns about the resident. When you are sending updates to responsible parties, make sure that you are including photos that can help bring your message to life.
Keep in mind the following notes to help this process run as smoothly as possible:
Firstly, make sure that your contacts are current and complete. It is also important that your updates are thorough and do not just include one person’s opinion. You need to have a structure in place so that your team is effectively communicating with one another. Only by doing so will you be able to give a full and accurate account to the responsible parties. This includes everything from dining to activities to medication. And finally, put things like templates and reminders in place so that the process is as streamlined as possible.