When I was a kid I spent a lot of time hanging out at my Grandparents’ house in the predominantly Jewish neighborhood of Fairfax in Los Angeles.
One Saturday afternoon Grandpa announced he and I were going to visit Grandma’s sister Great Aunt Gladys in a special home for old people who were sick.
I have this vivid memory of Grandma being very sad around this time and wondered why she didn’t come with us.
As soon as I walked into to the nursing home in West Los Angeles where Aunt Gladys now lived, holding on tightly to my Grandpa’s hand, I instantly knew why.
The facility stank like urine and to me was the saddest place on earth. [My happiest place was Disneyland.]
I wanted to run away.
Instead, I meandered through the hallways with Grandpa looking for the right room.
Along the way, we passed several elderly people in wheelchairs connected to oxygen tanks.
Once we found Gladys’s room, we walked in and that was when I saw her sick in bed.
She smiled when she saw us, but it was clear she was in a lot of pain and very unhappy with her current state of affairs.
There was only one hard chair, which my Grandpa let me sit on after he pulled it close to the bed, while he remained standing.
We didn’t stay long during that visit and as I reflect back on the few times I accompanied him to see my Great Aunt, I am acutely aware of the many shortcomings in the design of skilled nursing facilities of the time.
The good news is that is now changing.
More and more skilled care healthcare facilities in the United States are paying attention to the next generation of retirees—The Baby Boomers—who are demanding that retirement communities and skilled nursing establishments feel nurturing and more like home.
How to create home-like environments in skilled healthcare facilities [for residents and their visiting families] is the subject of today’s episode on The Wellness Design Podcast.
Regardless of what type of wellness business you own, you’ll get a lot of savvy design advice about how to tweak your space into a powerhouse of love your peeps will want to return to over and over again.
Listen in here: