Everyone at BrightStar Senior Living® is focused on honoring the individual, the unique attributes of the resident and what makes them tick. We respect and cherish the “Hazelness of Hazel.” Hazel, or anybody here, is first and foremost a person – not a list of functional deficits or medications or illnesses. We respect her individuality and focus on helping her live well in a beautiful care environment to carry on her life story in countless positive ways.
The Life Story
We start with an assessment of every individual who will be living in our community. Part of that assessment is about understanding the resident’s life story. Our life history documentation asks questions about their past, present and future. Many big and little things we discover are woven into their individualized service plan, their dining and meal plan, and into Person-Centered touchpoints to help deliver the “Hazelness of Hazel.” This allows us to connect with residents on a very personal level.
If Hazel is a retired kindergarten teacher who loved to sing nursery rhymes with her pupils, we may introduce nursery rhymes to help calm her when dementia causes agitation. It’s a meaningful way to connect with Hazel, resulting in a better experience. We communicate her health and how she’s connecting via Care Connection meetings. Residents love the memory boxes we make available outside of every suite, giving them a chance to share a little bit about their life story. Memory box keepsakes help connect in beautiful, meaningful ways. See more about Life at BrightStar.
Honoring the individual is not just about residents, it’s about how we respond to and engage with each other as colleagues and partners in executing on our brand promise of premium Person-Centered Care. When we interview a candidate, we get to know a little bit more about them on a personal level and understand what drives them. We create opportunities to engage with all staff and caregivers on a personal level to make them feel valued as individuals.
We love to ask our staff during our interview process to select a BrightStar promise word that most resonates with them. Those words are joy, dignity, beauty, individuality and connection. They’re a living, breathing part of everything we do and are included in the interview process. In interviewing for a caregiver position, we may hear how beauty is important to that person. It is our responsibility to then nurture our caregiver’s desire to create beautiful moments in the place our residents call home.
The Five Promise Words drive our Person-Centered approach, bringing them alive for each and every one of our residents. Every department head is asked how they will live out these words through their department efforts. Dining, life enrichment, housekeeping, healthcare and every department in between lives these words with our residents. The chef makes connections with Fred, knowing that in his travels as a prominent businessman, Fred would seek out the best pastrami sandwich shop in every city he traveled, so naturally he makes Fred a great pastrami sandwich. That’s a real connection that honors that individual.
In the “Daily Stand Up” meeting, managers ask the team for stories of how these words are lived out through a Person-Centered experience at the community. We may choose a focus word for the week. We’ll discuss touchpoint opportunities for individuals, a department or in the community as a whole. There are countless examples of how we do that and what it really means to the resident to be thought of not just as a number, a condition or a set of challenges related to their health needs, but as a person. Families appreciate that. We get to know them equally well, and they love seeing these connections we make with their loved ones. To be deeply understood like that is really what life is all about. It really is a beautiful thing.