From the hospital model---to a home
Old Age in a New Age
The Promise of Transformative Nursing Homes
B ET H BAKER
On investigative visits to nursing homes across the nation, Beth Baker has
witnessed profound changes. Culture change leaders are tearing up
everything... the floor plans, the flow charts, the schedules, the lousy menus,
the attitudes, the rules... and starting from scratch. They are creating extraordinary
places where people live in dignity and greet the day with contentment, assisted by
employees who feel valued and appreciated. Perhaps most surprising, these homes
prove that a high quality of life does not have to cost more. Some of the best homes
in the nation serve primarily low-income people who are on Medicaid.
In this new book, Baker tells the story of a better way to live in old age.
Although each home is different, they share common values: respecting individual
choices; empowering staff; fostering a strong community of elders, staff, family
members, and volunteers; redesigning buildings from a hospital model to a home
(where pets and children are part of everyday life); and honoring people when they
Her visits to more than two dozen facilities include those associated with the
Eden Alternative, Green House, Kendal, and the Pioneer Network.Whether these
transformational homes become the norm or the domain of a lucky few is the
question that faces the next generation of elders, the baby boomers.
A former hospital worker herself, Voices member Beth Baker is a freelance journalist, a regular contributor
to the Washington Post Health Section and the AARP Bulletin. Baker is the winner of two
Gold National Mature Media Awards for her reporting on aging.
This book will be available in May and may now be preordered from several sources, including Amazon.com and VanderbiltUniversityPress.com