NRC Health Customer Approved award badge 2020

30 senior living organizations recognized for delivering ‘exceptional experiences’

30 senior living organizations recognized for delivering 'exceptional experiences'

Thirty senior living and care organizations have been recognized as winners in NRC Health’s second annual Employee Approved Awards and Customer Approved Awards, the healthcare consumer data and content company announced Tuesday. The awards, which were presented at the 26th Annual NRC Health Symposium, a virtual event this year, recognize organizations from across the country for “delivering exceptional customer and employee experiences.”

Customer Approved Awards were selected based on performance ratings from family and residents, and the awards also were based on net promoter scores, a measure of satisfaction, and a proxy measure for loyalty. Organizations with fewer than 10 eligible facilities were omitted from consideration. Systems were then rank-ordered, and the top 20 organizations were selected for each award category.

2020 Customer Approved winners

  1. National HealthCare Corp., Murfreesboro, TN
  2. American Medical Facilities Management, Charleston, WV
  3. Ascension Health, St. Louis
  4. Vetter Senior Living, Elkhorn, NE
  5. Lutheran SeniorLife, Mars, PA
  6. Schonberg Care, Metairie, LA
  7. Solaris Healthcare, Orlando, FL
  8. Berkshire Healthcare, Pittsfield, MA
  9. Americare Senior Living, Sikeston, MO
  10. Ecumen, Shoreview, MN
  11. American Senior Communities, Indianapolis, IN
  12. Diversicare Healthcare Services, Brentwood, TN
  13. HCR ManorCare Assisted Living Facility Division, Toledo, OH
  14. Twin Rivers Health & Rehabilitation, Cleveland, TN
  15. Covenant Health Systems, Tewksbury, MA
  16. Providence Health and Services, Renton, WA
  17. Lutheran Services Carolinas, Salisbury, NC
  18. Trinity Health Continuing Care, Livonia, MI
  19. Ethica, Gray, GA
  20. The Goodman Group, Chaska, MN

Ecumen Connection Station, senior housing, senior living

Ways To Keep Senior Residents Engaged, Connected During COVID-19

Ecumen Lakeshore gets creative to offer outdoor visits

Shelley Kendrick, president and CEO of Ecumen, shares some ideas (2:59). WCCO Mid-Morning – July 17, 2020

Ecumen Connection Station, senior housing, senior living

Ecumen Lakeshore Gets Creative to Offer Outdoor Visits

Ecumen Lakeshore gets creative to offer outdoor visits

The Minnesota Department of Health recently released guidelines allowing one designated “essential caregiver” to enter the long-term facility in order to help with care.

Before long-term care facilities began restricting visitors back in March to keep the new coronavirus at bay, Tim Gilberg of Duluth would join his 89-year-old father nearly every evening for dinner at Ecumen Lakeshore’s assisted living facility.

After work, he’d hop in his vehicle and make the drive from Verso paper mill to the large campus across town on London Road to share a meal with his father, Derry Gilberg.

“Some people thought I lived here,” Tim said. “It worked out well for me. I didn’t have to go home, cook and do the dishes. I got to visit with everybody, all the workers and the residents.”

More than 100 days have passed since the father and son have been able carry out their routines: going for drives together on Saturday mornings, stopping for a bite to eat at Tappa Keg Inn.

“That was a big change for me,” Tim said. “I always enjoy coming to pick him up and take him for a ride. Now I can’t.”

His father, Derry, added: “I looked forward to going fishing and going to breakfast.”

It wasn’t until Father’s Day that the two were allowed to sit down together ⁠— face mask to face mask ⁠— outside following the Minnesota Department of Health’s release of guidelines on offering outdoor visits between long-term care facility residents and their loved ones. Before that the two stayed in touch through multiple phone calls a day and waves through the window.

On Friday, the health department released additional guidelines that would allow residents of long-term care facilities to be designated one “essential caregiver.” Those assigned individuals will be able to enter the buildings and assist with daily care needs. Facilities like Ecumen Lakeshore have until July 25 to review the guidelines and draft their own plans.

Those caregivers will need to wear eye and face coverings. For some residents, especially those with hearing impairments, communicating from behind masks poses real challenges. Which is why there are now two three-sided Plexiglas booths outside Ecumen that residents can sit in to safely visit family and friends without having to wear a face covering.

From behind a Plexiglas wall, Derry was able to visit unmasked with his son Saturday, and being able to read lips and facial expressions helped.

“Otherwise it’s just mouth mush,” Derry said.

“It’s better than nothing,” Tim said of the outdoor visits he has to schedule in advance online. He estimated the two have visited about eight times since allowed.

Jena Evans, community relations manager for Ecumen Lakeshore, said the visitation booths are especially popular among residents with dementia. Overall, the campus’ memory care residents see the highest number of visitors.

“Connections are important for everybody, for any age, any ability or disability, but for our memory care (residents) they’re incredibly important just for their overall happiness,” Evans said “We see that they’re just overall happier when they have familiar people from their life.”

Under the health department’s latest new guidelines Evans said not all residents will be assigned an essential caregiver who will be allowed to enter the building. Since those guidelines only allow for one visitor, she said the Plexiglas stations provide a way for residents, especially those who have difficulty wearing a mask, to see more than just one family member.

“Having this broad range of choices helps to extend the opportunities for our residents to have these meaningful connections,” Evans said.

Following the recent steps toward allowing outdoor visits, beginning this week, assisted living residents at Ecumen Lakeshore will be able to join in group activities and eat together in the dining room for the first time in months with physical distancing emphasized.

Ecumen Lakeshore Connection Station

Ecumen President & CEO Shelley Kendrick Named to YMCA Twin Cities Board of Directors


Shelley Kendrick, President and CEO of Ecumen, has been named to the YMCA Twin Cities Board of Directors. "I greatly admire the work of the YMCA and am very proud to join the thought leaders on this Board, supporting the important goals of youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility." 

Ecumen Lakeshore Connection Station

Shelley Kendrick Joins Select Thought Leaders on the International Council on Active Aging's COVID-19 Senior Living Task Force

Shelley Kendrick joins select thought leaders and prominent industry associations from across North America on the International Council on Active Aging's (ICAA) COVID-19 Senior Living Task Force. With a focus on the health, safety, and quality of life of residents and staff, the Task Force will develop, in conjunction with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), guidance for senior living organizations as they plan when and how they will safely reopen. Shelley said, "I was honored to be asked to join this task force and help find solutions to assist those we serve during and after COVID." 

Click here to learn more about the International Council on Active Aging.

senior housing, senior living

Ecumen Named Among 6 Senior Living Providers to Watch in 2020

Ecumen: Leading the way in nonprofit innovation

February 3, 2020 | Published by Senior Housing News | Article by Chuck Sudo


Although nonprofit senior living providers have shown an appetite for growth through affiliation in recent years, they have lost market share to their for-profit counterparts, who have greater willingness to assume risk for the sake of growth and innovation.

One exception to the rule is Ecumen, which has embraced several of the strategies for-profits have used to build scale. The Shoreview, Minnesota-based provider has a portfolio of 30 communities in eight states totaling 2,109 units and ranked 33rd on the 2019 LZ 200 list of top nonprofit providers. More important, Ecumen has transformed .... [Click here to view the full article]


Zvago St. Anthony Plaque

Zvago St. Anthony Park Wins Top Real Estate Development Honor




Zvago St. Anthony Park Wins Top Real Estate Development Honor

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Morshed Alam Named Ecumen Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer

Morshed (Mo) Alam, has been named Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Ecumen.Read more