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August 4, 2011

Resident-for-a-day experience changes HCAD student perceptions; Research by UWEC business faculty featured in long-term care publication

Resident for a dayBeing a resident in long term health care is an eye-opening experience for University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire health care administration (HCAD) students who literally walk a day in the shoes of nursing home residents as part of their required practicum experience. Students begin the 24-hour experience going through the admission process. During their stay they eat the food residents eat, and participate in all activities and services. After spending the night in a typical resident’s room, students are released through the discharge process.

To determine the impact this experience has on HCAD students, UW-Eau Claire associate professor Jennifer Johs-Artisensi, Ph.D., MPH and business communication assistant professor Dr. Paula Lentz, surveyed 36 HCAD students who completed the resident-for-a-day experience in fall 2010. 

In looking at the data collected, analysis by Johs-Artisensi and Lentz revealed perspective changes in participants, both in terms of a more empathetic view of the resident experience as well as organizational practices necessary to support resident-centered care.

Based on this research, Johs-Artisensi co-authored an article as a guest columnist in McKnight's Long-Term Care News. The article, which discussed student impact, appears on the magazine’s website as well as in the August 2011 edition of the magazine. McKnight's Long-Term Care News is a business news magazine serving the institutional long-term care field. An excerpt of the article follows.

Preparing future long-term care leaders: Perspectives change after becoming residents

Written by UW-Eau Claire professor Jennifer Johs-Artisensi, Ph.D., MPH and Elizabeth Knight '05, a UW-Eau Claire mass communications graduate and President of Aplomb PR

The past 24 hours have been surreal for the 21-year old nursing home resident. She has signed reams of forms during her admissions process. She has become overwhelmed with questions and left trying to understand and remember everything she has been told. Once admitted, she is wheeled to her new home, a room, where she meets her roommate and, coincidentally, becomes more nervous and anxious as staff introduce themselves ask questions and even examine her. Later in the day, she eats a pureed dinner in the dining room with other residents and then is transferred to bed for an evening's sleep.

Is this young woman rehabbing from a car accident or entering a hospice program because of a terminal illness? No, she is a student in an evidence-based healthcare administration program preparing to become a future administrator.

To read the complete article, visit McKnight's Long-Term Care News.
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