Our assisted living facilities, Los Angeles feel like home. Raya’s Paradise was featured in the Beverly Hills Courier, November 9, 2102: Most people do not know the difference between a large assisted-living facility that may house 150 or more residents and a smaller board-and-care home. Larger facilities are usually for more active residents able to enjoy all the community activities offered; and for those who can manage getting to and from the building’s dining room and common areas on their own. These large facilities carry the same license as the smaller board- and-care homes. In California in the early 1970s, the residential care system was established to provide non-skilled nursing-based services to the elderly. These homes are referred to as “Board & Care” or “Residential Care Homes for the Elderly (RCFE’s).” The governing body is the State of California, Department of Social Services, Community Care Licensing. These homes are not allowed to provide medical services. They can, however, provide assistance with all activities of daily living (ADL’s). Board & care homes are smaller residential homes that afford a safe home-like atmosphere and comfortable and dignified care where residents can enjoy the living room, backyard, kitchen/dining services, homemade meals, personal attention and social interaction. For those elderly who suffer from dementia, the small residential home can be an ideal setting because of the consistency in staff and constant super vision. Residents adjust faster and often do better than in the larger Assisted Living Facilities. Such a place is Raya’s Paradise, a residential care facility with five locations in L.A. and West Hollywood with 6-11 residents each. “We make sure your loved one feels at home away from home,” says Moti Michael Gamburd, executive director. “Our caring staff—many of which have been with the company for more than 18 years—provides personalized attention to each individual,” says Gamburd adding that the caregiver to patient ratio is 1:3. While all are welcome at Raya’s Paradise, the company is known for its care of those with Alzheimer’s, other memory disorders and those who’ve suffered strokes. “We offer a new approach to dementia and Alzheimer’s care,” says Gamburd “Our environment is designed especially for our resident’s to thrive. “The activities they do together create opportunities to experience and feel accomplishment and satisfaction for completion of a job,” adds Gamburd. “This team approach gives the security of knowing there is always a helping hand ready when they need it.” The daily routine has residents up for showers in easily accessible bath- rooms, followed by breakfast and a morning activity. Since some of the homes are near parks there are visits for those want ing to go by foot or wheelchair. Afternoons often see musical entertainment, like an accordion player and all holidays and birthdays are celebrated. “We try to keep it as homey as possible,” Gamburd says. “There’s always something to do,” Gamburd adds, “like cards, puzzles, reminiscing, big band music or bingo.” More alert residents often help set the table or help with the home’s laundry to keep them engaged. For an RCFE to accept a resident with dementia it must have a “waiver” from Community Care Licensing, as the Raya’s facilities do. The waiver means a variance to a specific regulation based on a facility-wide need or circumstances which is not typically tied to a specific resident or staff person. Raya’s Paradise also has waivers to care for bedridden residents—”the building has to meet certain licensing criteria,” Gamburd reports. Gamburd advises those seeking a board-and care home for their loved one to ask questions: • If you are placing your loved one with dementia into an RCFE, you should be asking the administrator for a copy of their waiver for dementia care. This will give you peace of mind knowing that this RCFE has the proper staffing, wander guards or other means to keep residents from wandering; and knowledge of how to manage their residents with dementia. • Does this RCFE provide 24 hour “awake” staff? Falls usually occur in the evening; and it is important that staff is awake and ready to help residents get to and from the restroom at night. Many small board-and-care homes or RCFE’s, do not have a 24-hour awake staff. They may have a hus- band and wife who live in the home and are working 24/7. Working that many hours is a daunting job and it is important that staffing is “fresh” and that they are going home to rest before returning to work. Night staff should not be working somewhere else during the day and then coming to work at night at your RCFE. Raya’s homes have separate day and night staffs to provide compassionate, committed care. Raya’s also caters to those not yet ready to move with its CARE (Caring, Assisting, Respecting Elders) program that provides in-home caregivers. View or download the published article here: Beverly Hills Courier Full page 11-09-12