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Mountain City Care Center is blessed with Good Samaritans

By Paula Walter
Every month, Mountain City Care and Rehabilitation Center recognizes employees who have gone above and beyond their job descriptions as part of their Good Samaritan Program. This initiative is not limited to just employees of the nursing home, as acts of kindness by volunteers and residents are also recognized.
The residential council is the voice for residents to express their concerns and discuss the day-to-day functions of the nursing home. Robin Greene, the social worker for the facility; Lisa Stout, who is the activities directory, as well as the chaplain, Steven Spencer, are all part of the group meeting, which is open to all. The council reviews and votes on the nominations received for the Good Samaritan of the month, along with any other concerns that have arisen.
The concept of a residential council arose when Mountain City Care and Rehabilitation Center, a part of Signature Healthcare, instituted the Eden Alternative, which was first recognized in the 1990s. Developed by Dr. Bill Thomas, the goals are to remove loneliness, boredom and helplessness for those living in nursing homes. Mountain City was one of the first in Signature Healthcare’s homes to implement this plan. “We give them back whatever we can to make it more homelike,” said Human Resources Director, Chrissy Whaley.
One of the changes implemented under the Eden Alternative initiative was the introduction of Waldo, the dog and Tiger, the cat, who have claimed the hearts of the residents and staff. Each of the halls at Mountain City Care and Rehabilitation Center has been given street names that give it more of a neighborhood feel. Meetings are held where residents can express their wishes, request different activities and socials in the building where they can attend. “We find things they really like and give them back their simple pleasures,” Whaley added.
Dee Hawkins was the recipient of the Good Samaritan award in January 2014. She works in housekeeping and has been there since 2011. She received the award as “she is often seen taking extra time for her co-workers and doing special acts of kindness for the residents.” Amber Cullop has been a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) since 2012. She did her training at Mountain City Care and Rehabilitation Center, as did the others CNAs who are employed there. Her February, 2014 award was based on the recommendation “Whenever we’ve needed an extra pair of hands, she is always willing to help out.” Jana Chappell, also a CNA since 2012, received the March, 2014 nod as she is “Always willing to help, a good team player, doesn’t complain and good attitude.  Always has a smile.” Tanya Baird has been the assistant business office manager since 2011. She received the April, 2014 Good Samaritan award as “she is always willing to use her talents to assist with facility events and special projects for the residents.” Molly Darocha, a CNA since 2013, received the May, 2014 award as she is “Reliable, dependable, if needed, she will help out on her days off.  Her residents love her.” Ellen Dugger, a dietary employee since 2012, was the recipient of the June 2014 recognition. “Ellen always has a smile on her face, is cheerful with staff and residents.  She is willing to go out of her way to do extra things for the residents and often tries to come up meal substitutes to find something they will try eating.  She also offers staff left over treats.  Very nice person!”  Another recommendation stated, “She is sweet and kind and always willing to do what she can for the residents. She is always very friendly and helpful to staff & residents.”
For the rest of the story pick up a copy of this week's Tomahawk.