Positive Aging SourceBook

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for more than 32 years

Posted 06/09/2022

Emily Hoovler appointed Life Enrichment Manager of the new memory care community, Shenandoah at The Virginian

Emily Hoovler appointed Life Enrichment Manager of the new memory care community, Shenandoah at The Virginian

Positive Aging Community Champion, The Virginian welcomes Emily to  their state-of-the-art living option for individuals affected with Alzheimer's Disease or related dementia and who can benefit from the services available within a secured, specially designed living environment. 

Shenandoah Memory Care™ at The Virginian

Our Shenandoah Memory Care Community is our state-of-the-art living option for individuals affected with Alzheimer's Disease or related dementia and who can benefit from the services available within a secured, specially designed living environment.

Our Innovative Design

Every aspect of our all-new Shenandoah community has been designed with the varying stages of memory loss in mind, including color-coded cueing, wayfinding 'neighborhoods,' personalized memory boxes, interactive artwork, a private beauty salon, and a dual-themed reminiscence courtyard allowing residents to 'relax in the backyard' or 'walk in the park,' all within a secured setting.

We've also added state-of-the-art technologies, including circadian lighting, to assist residents in achieving peaceful days and restful nights. For fun, OBIE is an award-winning video gaming system that can be played through simple hand motion, with games scientifically designed for individuals at all levels of memory care.

Our Insightful Individualized Care

Each member of the Shenandoah team is carefully trained in our innovative and proven Heartfelt CONNECTIONS Program®, a comprehensive program based on the latest in memory care research and best practices. 

Heartfelt CONNECTIONS is an individualized program focusing on each resident's capabilities, along with a personalized plan concentrating on each resident's unique abilities while celebrating each small success. 

This remarkable program promotes dignity and a sense of accomplishment in day-to-day activities, supports improved self-worth, self-esteem, and overall health and wellbeing, and reduces fear, anxiety, and frustration.

For every incoming Shenandoah resident, we hold a roundtable meeting that includes the resident, the resident's family, and our Memory Care team. The purpose is to gather detailed information about the new resident's needs and desires to develop an individualized care plan.

Our Therapeutic Milieu

In addition to wayfinding, much of our interior design serves to create a calm, therapeutic milieu in which residents can enjoy peaceful and engaging days. These features include abundant natural light, tactile artwork, serene fish tanks, contrast dinnerware to maximize food and liquid intake, and personalized "memory boxes" next to each apartment entrance. 

The Shenandoah's therapeutic design also includes three unique engagement areas to benefit our residents. These include:  

  • Reminiscence Lounge for sharing memories of days gone by
  • Sensory Lounge in which all aspects of sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch can be accessed, either individually or through group activity
  • Multi-Themed Outdoor Courtyard offering an opportunity to both relax in a 1960s themed backyard or 'cross the street' to enjoy a 'day in the park' before returning safely' home.' 

In addition to the Shenandoah's state-of-art care, cutting-edge design, and other unique offerings, residents of our community have access to all of the amenities of our full continuum of care community.

Our 'Nana' Technology™

'Nana' Technology is microchip-based technology designed, intended, or that can otherwise be used to improve the quality of life for older adults. In our Shenandoah Memory Care Neighborhood, these technologies include: 

Circadian Lighting:  Our circadian lighting system allows us to regulate interior lighting, either throughout the Shenandoah living environment or by individual sections, living areas, or rooms. By providing light signals on wavelengths that mimic natural biorhythms in nature, our residents can experience 'peaceful days and restful nights', reducing the 'sundowning effect' of wakeful nighttime hours often experienced by individuals with Alzheimer's or related memory impairment. 

OBIE: An award-winning technology, Obie features unique hand motion-activated games tailored by gerontologists, cognitive neuroscientists, and medical experts to create an engaging and intellectually stimulating activity for individuals at identified stages of memory impairment. It's also fun! 

The Virginian will be among the first senior living communities in the nation and first in the D.C. Metro area to utilize this technology which has been demonstrated to improve cognitive stimulation and motor skills while keeping seniors active and motivated to participate in activities. The installation is part of The Virginian's 'High touch, High tech' $56.5 million renovations, including our all-new state-of-the-art expanded Memory Care facility. 

LifeBio™: LifeBio works directly with both residents and family members through in-person interviews and an online portal to create a biography of each resident, including a printed 'Life Story Book,' a 'Snapshot Summary,' and an 'Action Plan' of suggestions for staff to help ensure an individualized approach to care for each resident. LifeBio is an evidence-based approach that has been shown to reduce loneliness while increasing social connectedness, feelings of happiness, and overall wellbeing. 

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