First Green House Long Term Care Facility to Open in Florida

First Green House Long Term Care Facility to Open in Florida

Up until now, Florida nursing homes have remained largely the same, but things are about to change for the better. John Knox Village is opening the state’s first Green House long term care facility in Pompano Beach.

Florida’s First

The retirement community has plans to begin construction on the new home next year. According to the Sun Sentinel, plans are also in motion to open a second Green House facility in Jacksonville next year. As the state catches up with the preferred care setting, nursing home residents are in for a change in culture.

As the demand for long term care increases with a surge in the senior population, retirees in assisted living and nursing homes are no longer satisfied with the old model of care. Barren walls and a lack of real privacy characterizes many of these facilities, whose residents seem bored, unhappy, and most of all, lonely. The Green House Project sought to change that and alter the dynamics of nursing home care to a more person centered care model.

The Green House model of care focuses on the patient and positions the nurses and doctors remain in the background of  the situation. Every home houses between 10 and 12 residents who each have their own private room and bathroom.

Changing the Culture

The issue of private rooms is what initially led Florida’s John Knox Village to the Green House Project. President and CEO Robert Scharmann explained that upon surveying residents about a future facility upgrade, one request was heard loud and clear.

“The one thing we kept hearing was, ‘We want private rooms,’ “ Scharmann said. The Green House model provided that and more. The bedrooms are private, but open common rooms and kitchen spaces allow for social interaction among the small household of people.

The non-profit organization has now assisted with the development of more than 150 homes and the concept continues to gain traction in the world of long term care providers. The increased independence and social intimacy involved in the Green House project foster a much higher degree of happiness and purpose among residents.

A New Home

The relationships and bonds formed, coupled with the daily social interaction, help prevent memory loss and other health problems associated with isolation.

According to Forbes, the operational costs of these homes are about the same as any other nursing home. On top of that, the caregivers also find themselves in a more comfortable situation, where they can give more attention to each patient and experience a higher sense of satisfaction. Less staff turnover and fewer re-hospitalizations are just a couple of the benefits of a patient centered care model like the Green House.

David Farrell, director of the Green House Project, explained the shift in choices that is taking hold in the long term care industry: “The system is moving away from rewarding high volume and poor care in nursing homes. Green Houses show that smaller can be better.”

The future of long term care continues to improve, but preparing for the cost of care is one thing too few people have addressed. Read more about how to plan for the high cost of long term care and secure your assets in retirement.

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