Welcome to My Better Nursing Home!

The time spent in long-term care can be one of growth, emotional healing, and creativity for residents, staff, and family members.  If you’re wondering how to get there from here, please look through this site and read my blog, where you’ll find answers that will allow you to create positive change instantly, whether you’re a CEO, a CNA, or seeing a loved one in long-term care.

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"My goal is to make long-term care a place I'd want to live when it's my turn, using my training as a psychologist."

Recent Blog Posts

NHAideAnnoyed

The high cost of rudeness

Dr. El - September 2, 2015 - Business Strategies, Communication, Customer service, Engaging with families, McKnight's Long-Term Care News

Here’s my latest article on McKnight’s Long-Term Care News: The high cost of rudeness A study about rudeness in the medical journal Pediatrics got me thinking about the possible effects of rudeness in long-term care. In “The Impact of Rudeness on Medical Team Performance: A Randomized Trial,” teams were subjected to rude comments by a […]

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radio

Radio for Visually Impaired People

Dr. El - August 29, 2015 - Anecdotes, Technology

Mr. Johnson was in his 90s and had lost his vision many years ago. His great joy in life now was listening to the radio. When I first came to see him, he had many different types of radios in his room. There were several radio alarm clocks and complicated boom boxes with too many […]

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Sunset

Spirituality in Long-Term Care

Dr. El - August 18, 2015 - Inspiration, McKnight's Long-Term Care News, Personal Reflections, Resident care, Role of psychologists

Here’s my latest article on McKnight’s Long-Term Care News: Spirituality in Long-Term Care Last week, a New York Times article referred to the lack of training to prepare doctors to recognize the spiritual needs of their patients. Hospital physician Robert Klitzman, M.D., emphasized in the Well section article the value of meeting these needs. Psychology […]

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pltctreelogo

I’m honored to win the 2015 PLTC Professional Service Award!

Dr. El - August 10, 2015 - Nominations/Awards, Role of psychologists

I’m thrilled to share with you that I’m the recipient of the Psychologists in Long-Term Care Professional Service Award for 2015! Psychologists in Long-Term Care is “a network of psychologists and other professionals dedicated to the enhancement of mental health and quality of life for those involved in long-term care through practice, research and advocacy.” They […]

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Dr. El

Dr. El’s Shrinky LTC Fantasy

Dr. El - August 4, 2015 - Business Strategies, Common Nursing Home Problems and How Psychologists Can Solve Them, Engaging with families, McKnight's Long-Term Care News, Personal Reflections, Resident education/Support groups, Role of psychologists

Here’s my latest article on McKnight’s Long-Term Care News: Dr. El’s Shrinky LTC Fantasy I hung up the phone with the managed care case reviewer. The patient in question was in her late 50s, with multiple sclerosis and other physical problems that had unexpectedly interfered with her ability to return home or even to sit […]

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Carer Helping Senior Man With Walking Frame

A good perspective on residents

Dr. El - July 29, 2015 - Customer service, Inspiration

During a recent senior living conference, I was staying at the well-appointed Embassy Suites in Norman, Oklahoma. The key card to open the room came in a small folder. When I took out my key I found a statement on the folder that struck me as being completely relevant to long-term care and an excellent […]

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Betta fish

Diabetes care: Take two betta fish and call me in a week

Dr. El - July 22, 2015 - McKnight's Long-Term Care News, Medication issues, Resident education/Support groups

Here’s my latest article on McKnight’s Long-Term Care News: Diabetes care: Take two betta fish and call me in a week More than 25% of the US population over the age of 65 years has diabetes1 and the numbers are far higher for those in long-term care. (Approximately one third of nursing home residents have […]

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WHCOA

WHCOA: LeadingAge Summary

Dr. El - July 15, 2015 - Communication, Dementia, Inspiration, Technology, Transitions in care

I wrote about the White House Conference on Aging last October, noting that it was a “once-a-decade” national conference about the needs of our aging population.” (McKnight’s LTC News, October 2014) Below, LeadingAge summarizes the 2015 White House Conference on Aging, which took place on Monday: 10 Things that Happened at the White House Conference on […]

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Portrait of multi generations Indian family at home. Asian people living lifestyle.

Creating Better Deaths in Long-Term Care

Dr. El - July 8, 2015 - Communication, End of life, Engaging with families, McKnight's Long-Term Care News, Resident education/Support groups

Here’s my latest article on McKnight’s Long-Term Care News: Creating Better Deaths in Long-Term Care I walked into Mr. Hobart’s room, ready for my initial evaluation. He was a thin, graying man whose loose clothes hung in folds around him. He’d spent every day last week in chemo. He spoke quietly, discussing his estrangement from […]

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My Better Nursing Home

How to Talk About Dying (Ellen Goodman, NYTimes)

Dr. El - July 2, 2015 - Communication, End of life, Engaging with families, Resident care

Here’s an important article in the New York Times Opinionator Column by Ellen Goodman, one of the founders of The Conversation Project (which I’m about to investigate further). Note her comment that she expected her mother’s doctors to tell her what to do. The families of our residents are expecting the same from us. How to Talk […]

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