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resident and food service director in jea senior living community dining room

Meaningful Moments Cornerstones: Specialized Dining

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JEA’s Meaningful Moments® program is the foundation of our person-focused care model. Meaningful Moments is a family-centered concept that starts by learning everything there is to know about our residents – their passions, achievements, careers, family, hobbies, and interests. This knowledge allows our team members to develop individualized plans of care around each residents’ unique life story. Through our Meaningful Moments program, we are able to create moments of delight, wonder, and meaning for our residents while providing care each day. Our Meaningful Moments program is built on five cornerstones: Programming, Family Partnerships, Ongoing Education, Innovation, and Specialized Dining.

This blog post highlights the cornerstone of Specialized Dining – for more information on the other cornerstones of Meaningful Moments, please view our related posts below:

 

Specialized Dining

At JEA Senior Living, our philosophy of care is simple, to partner with families as we provide quality care, life-enrichment, and fulfillment for our residents in a home-like setting, “Honoring the experience of aging by caring together.” This is accomplished through our signature Meaningful Moments program with its strong Specialized Dining component.


Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementia can create many challenges when it comes to meeting basic Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) such as nutrition and hydration. It is even common for many living with memory loss to lose interest in eating. One factor affecting this could be a lack of visual acuity to distinguish contrast between the meal and the plate it is served on. Our Specialized Dining program provides colorful Fiestaware plates that help with contrast and improved recognition of meals. We also provide modified utensils, plates, and/or drinkware for residents as needed.

 
Throughout our lives, mealtimes are experienced in community, sitting around the dinner table socializing with others. To help our residents feel more at home in our communities, our Specialized Dining program includes six daily opportunities to engage with others over a meal or snack. With three meals and three substantial snacks provided daily, our teams are able to ensure that all residents are receiving regular and meaningful interaction, proper nutrients, and caloric intake daily. This helps residents maintain a healthy weight, minimizes the risk of dehydration and also provides a structured opportunity for residents to socialize with Team Members and other residents.


Congruent to our Individualized Programming questionnaire to determine resident hobbies, activities, and interests, our Specialized Dining program includes a questionnaire that allows resident families to list favorite foods, and resident physicians to note any dietary accommodations/restrictions to help keep each resident happy, healthy and well-nourished. For residents who require greater accommodations to their dietary plan, each of our communities has designated dining spaces. Our independent and supportive dining rooms both include trained Team Members who can provide residents of all acuities with an enjoyable and dignified dining experience. 


As residents require more assistance in their dining experience, our well-trained and experienced Team Members are able to assist them. Through the Dementia Live simulation training, our team members learn not only the unique challenges and disease process of Alzheimer’s and related dementia but also develop greater compassion and care for residents, along with unique solutions for each resident’s dining challenges. An example of providing a dignified solution for a resident requiring assistance in the supportive dining room is the “hand-over-hand” approach. This allows team members to assist residents in their dining experience, while still allowing each resident the dignity and tactile experience of caring for themselves.


For more information on our Meaningful Moments program and Specialized Dining – check out the video below from, San Jose Gardens Alzheimer’s Special Care Center, or contact your local JEA Senior Living community for more information and resources.

 

JEA Senior Living

(800) 254-9442

5101 NE 82nd Ave Suite 200 Vancouver, WA 98662 US