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Distance Learning: Demonstration of Successful Models: A Recipe for Living Well

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Karen Nichols, RN, NHA, Executive Director, The Cascades Verdae - View Bio>>

Sponsors: Three Rivers AHEC,
University of Georgia Institute of Gerontology

Session Description:
You usually don't expect to hear the words "innovative" and "long-term senior care" in the same sentence. Fortunately, that wasn’t the case with Karen Nichols, Executive Director at The Cascades Verdae, a leading edge senior community in Greenville, SC. Ms. Nichols will discuss how cultural change in long-term care can help you address the helplessness, loneliness, and boredom faced by seniors, how you can you help those in your care adjust to "those strangers" taking care of them, and what longevity research says about long-term care and its impact.

Session Objectives:

  1. Build common knowledge and ensure an understanding of the principles of culture change and person-centered care in long-term care settings
  2. Identify ways in which culture change is already occurring and can be fostered and nurtured in the near future
  3. Identify and address concerns which regulatory agencies and legislators may be able to address so that culture change progress can continue
  4. Increase awareness, facilitate information sharing and promote partnerships between all stakeholders of aging services in Georgia.

Continuing Education Credit: 1.2 Contact Hours
Three Rivers AHEC is an approved provider of continuing nursing education by the Georgia Nurses Association, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

Social Work:
Continuing education credits will be available to social work attendees. You can obtain 1.25 continuing education hours for attending one of the presentations. If you wish to receive continuing education credit, please provide the last 4 digits of your social security number on the registration form.

Technology Requirements:
Participants registering for programs should have access to the following technology for best viewing and participation:

  • Personal computer with Macintosh or Windows with 512 MB of RAM
  • Broadband internet connection such as an office LAN, DSL, or cable modem
  • Phone next to personal computer (or speaker phone if multiple people are viewing)
  • Computer speakers (built-in or attached)
  • Latest version of Adobe Flash which can be downloaded for free at

About Karen Nichols:

Karen Nichols, RN, NHA, is an innovative manager with over 13 years experience in senior living management and is currently the Executive Director for The Cascades Verdae, a continuing care retirement community in Greenville, S.C. A pioneer in the culture change movement, she was given the opportunity to design, build and operate the cottages at Brushy Creek, a community of 144 elders requiring a skilled level of care. They reside within 12 cottage homes, each housing 12 elders.

She served as the Village Mentor/Administrator and developed a strong community reputation for exceptional quality-of-care and was responsible for operations during the community’s transition from Roger Huntington Nursing Center to its new location at Brushy Creek.

Nichols served as the Coordinator for the Coalition for Culture Change in South Carolina (Eden Alternative Coalition) for three years, and has participated in several coalitions with the Association of Households International to champion culture change throughout the nation.