Culture Change is the national movement for the transformation of older adult services based on person-centered values and practices.

We believe the culture of caring for the aging and people with disabilies will change when change is effected in three different areas. There needs to be personal transformation, operational transformation and physical transformation. See the chart below.

Personal Transformation

When someone seeking care for themselves or their loved one, realizes the extent to which their loved one’s life is going to change and sees the problems that result from this change, they become a stand for changing the culture of care to one that provides quality of life, wellbeing and a sense of self-worth that comes from having choice in how you live.

Operational Transformation

Most caregivers of people who are aging or have a disability have been trained in the the medical model but the people they care for aren’t sick. When caregivers shift to see their clients as human beings with needs, emotions and preferences they realize that person-centered care not only increases the wellbeing of their clients, it improves their enjoyment of their work.

Physical Transformation

Comfortable home-like settings can improve the outlook and quality of life of people in long-term care. A cheerful environment designed to encourage community help people to feel happy and contented. Non-medical environments encourage caregivers to see and treat their clients as human beings with feelings, hopes and dreams.

A Person-Centered Movement

Culture Change is the common name given to the national movement for the transformation of older adult services based on person-centered values and practices. It focuses on individualizing care and focusing on the person, not just their disease or what is wrong with them.

The Culture Change movement is gaining strength all over the world. In fact, person-centered practices are accepted as the gold standard globally by the World Health Organization and The Institute of Medicine.

Few dispute the philosophy behind Person-Centered Care. But in addition to the challenges of change itself, undoing the medical model can be daunting for everyone who works in a nursing home.

Culture Change starts by examining the culture of our organizations. Our culture is our collective thoughts, behaviors and attitudes based on our values and beliefs. Culture change requires us to change our old medical, institutional thinking and practices, and transform everything we do to focus on the PEOPLE we are serving.

We need to focus on an organizational culture that has values that drive resident choice, dignity, meaningful relationships and self-determination for those who live and work in our organizations.

Culture change requires changes in organizational practices, physical environments, as well in personal beliefs and relationships. What is the culture of your organization?

Photography courtesy of A.G. Rhodes Health & Rehab

Person-Centered Care and Culture Change are Not New: Their Time Has Come

CMS recently issued a comprehensive revision to the Nursing Home Regulations that became effective November 28, 2016. Person-Centered Care is now an important theme that runs throughout the regulations. However, the culture change movement is not new. Did you know that the culture change movement has been growing since the 1970s?