LeadingAge evaluated the impact of PREPARE, a bioterrorism training program, on participating communities using baseline, post, and 6-month post surveys. The Health Resources and Services Administration in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services funded the evaluation.

Participants from 400 aging services organizations nationwide gained knowledge, skills and abilities in bioterrorism/disaster/emergency preparedness surveillance, response and recovery. The program featured a variety of learning activities and tools via classroom experiences, exercises and web courses. 

PREPARE provides long-term care organizations guidance in integrating this education into:

  • Quality improvement programs.
  • Building community and volunteer resource linkages.
  • Involving their communities with emergency management at local, state and national levels. 
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Evaluated the impact of a bioterrorism training on participating communities.

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Connecting Affordable Senior Housing and Services: A Descriptive Study of  3 Colorado Models describes and compares how 3 affordable senior housing communities in Colorado help residents maintain independent living in the face of growing frailty and/or disability. 

The 3 properties evolved different strategies to support residents as their needs changed. One property organized itself as a direct service provider, the second property developed a rich array of purposeful community partnerships and the third property left to resident and their families the responsibility for organizing their own services.

The study revealed several interesting findings, including:

  • Although the median age of residents was about 85, the great majority reported themselves to be in good health.
  • Between 16 and 26 percent of residents across the 3 properties reported 3 or more chronic conditions, while between 15 and 22 percent reported limitations in one or more activity of daily living (ADL) or instrumental activity of daily living (IADL).
  • Residents reported being more likely to use services if they were offered onsite.
  • Residents in the 3 properties relied to a great extent on family members to provide services and care.
  • The make up of residents in the 3 properties is changing; they are much older at entry and, reflecting their older age, are more likely to have chronic health problems and disability than was true 10 or 20 years ago.

The study was conducted in collaboration with the University of Denver School of Social Work and was funded by the Retirement Research Foundation with additional support from the Murray and Sydell Rosenberg Foundation (Greystone).

Intro: 

Connecting Affordable Senior Housing and Services: A Descriptive Study of  3 Colorado Models describes and compares how 3 affordable senior housing communities in Colorado help residents maintain independent living in the face of growing frailty and/or disability. 

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The program was designed to provide nurses with the knowledge and skills needed to be effective leaders and mentors with the goal of improving outcomes for older adults. LeadingAge collaborated with the University of Kansas Medical Center to evaluate and disseminate the findings on this initiative. Eighty to 100 registered nurses from rural and underserved areas and from across settings (hospitals, nursing facilities, and home health agencies) were trained to:  

  • Provide and model geriatric care grounded in best practices.
  • Assist in the dissemination of gerontological/geriatric knowledge to frontline nursing care providers.
  • Mentor all nursing care providers in putting evidence-based geriatric care into practice.  

The project was a train-the-trainer model of geriatric education and mentoring/adult learning.  A comprehensive curriculum was developed that included face-to-face didactics, training over interactive televideo, practicum experiences at model facilities, and web modules.   

Key findings from the project:

  • GEMM positively influenced participants' self-rating on mentoring and job empowerment.
  • After the program, participants were more confident on mentoring nursing staff, developing a clear vision of quality improvement for nursing staff , training nursing staff in evidence-based geriatric nursing practice and building feelings of teamwork and credited the GEMM program for helping to develop these skills.  
  • Although the participants indicated a higher self-perceived ability on many of the training topics, they did not provide significantly more training opportunities on these areas after the program.
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The Geriatric Education Master Mentor (GEMM) program is an educational program to train registered nurses (RNs) on the evidence-based geriatric care and to improve their clinical teaching and mentoring skills.

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The team developed interpersonal interactions among nurses and aides, provided training to enhance the supervisory skills of team supervisors and encouraged a sense of teamwork  in Kansas nursing homes. They measured the impact of these interventions on interpersonal relationships and supervisory capabilities. The major findings were:

1) Professional trainer intervention had a measurable impact on participating nurse supervisors.

2) The training had less measurable cognitive and behavioral impact on aides than for supervisors.

3) The interpersonal training and the indirect effect of better nurse supervision did have some positive impact on aides.

4) Stress ranked constantly high by aides and supervisors both before and after the intervention.

Intro: 

LeadingAge, in partnership with the LeadingAge Kansas and Wichita State University, tested a set of interventions directed towards reducing the high staff turnover rate in nursing homes.

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The National Initiative on Paraprofessional Long-Term Care Workers project, in partnership with the Paraprofessional Healthcare Institute, sought to address the shortage of high quality and committed workers in long-term care by developing a comprehensive, national workforce improvement initiative. 

The purposes of the initiative were to:

  • Increase public recognition of the critical role played by these workers. 
  • Promote innovation at the state, community and provider level to improve recruitment and retention.
  • Create a national clearinghouse database on the long-term care workforce with search capacity.
  • Increase understanding of the causes of worker shortages and the likelihood they will persist in the future so that new policies, programs, and practices can be implemented to resolve them, and collaborate with potential funders to plan and implement a systematic program of applied research, demonstration and evaluation to improve workforce recruitment and retention and the delivery of high quality long-term care services.   

This led to the creation of the Better Jobs  Better Care program.

Additionally, this initiative created a measurement resource guide of instruments for long-term care providers, which they can use in collaboration with researchers to assess the effectiveness of workforce improvement practices that have been implemented.      

Intro: 

Developed a workforce initiative to improve recruitment and retention of frontline workers.

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