How to Make the Survey Process Smoother: Tips for the New Director of Nursing Services (DNS)

The director of nursing services (DNS) position is multi-faceted, and a new DNS must learn a lot quickly. Areas such as providing residents quality care and staffing take top priority, and rightfully so. However, another chief priority is on the DNS’s mind daily: survey. Poor survey outcomes can have negative …

How the DNS Can Ensure Staff Preparation for Code Situations

A certified nursing assistant (CNA) conducting afternoon rounds finds Mr. Smith slumped over in his chair. The CNA notices that he does not appear to be breathing and calls the nurse for help. The nurse enters Mr. Smith’s room and checks for a pulse and respirations. Finding neither, the nurse …

Turnover Solutions Series – Part 2: Understanding Why Employees Leave and Strategies to Reduce Turnover

The staffing crisis is an ongoing dilemma for long-term care. To combat the effects of this crisis, directors of nursing services (DNS) may be tasked with finding creative solutions. Often, DNSs focus on the lack of potential candidates and difficulties related to hiring. However, staff turnover is a large part …

Strategies for Overcoming the Struggles of Dementia Care

Dementia is a difficult diagnosis to manage in long-term care. The disease robs individuals of precious memories and their ability to communicate. This loss can cause residents and their loved ones fear, sadness, and sometimes anger. Often, the resident’s inability to communicate increases behaviors such as aggression toward staff or …

Bed Safety: Tips to Stay Out of the Danger Zone!

Performing bed safety checks is often an essential duty of the maintenance supervisor. However, the risk to residents of injury or even death while they are in bed is a serious matter, and the DNS has a responsibility to ensure their safety. This article will discuss the “danger zones” that …

Does Your Facility Staffing Data Tell the True Story? Ensure PBJ Accuracy for a Complete Picture

Staffing is a topic that is always on the director of nursing services’ (DNS’s) mind, and its importance only continues to increase. Usually, the focus is on filling open positions to meet workload demands. However, staffing also affects other areas the DNS should be cognizant of. One of these areas …

Updates to Requirements of Participation May Trigger More Citations for Resident-to-Resident Altercations

Mrs. C is an 85-year-old resident with cognitive impairments. She often wanders from room to room and likes to pick up pretty trinkets and put them in her purse for safekeeping. Mr. M finds her sorting through items in his room. Thinking that she is stealing his watch, he yells …

Discharge Planning: How to Ensure a Smooth Transition for the Resident

The words “It’s time for you to go home” can evoke happiness and excitement for both residents and staff. Smiles appear on the faces of residents and their families, and giddiness is in the air. However, an inadequate discharge process can also generate frustration and anxiety or even lead to …

Time to Review Those 2022 Goals: Will They Be Met?

Long-term care has seen many changes this year; new vaccination regulations, the removal of some COVID-19 waivers, and, of course, ongoing changes related to COVID-19 have all required frequent adaptation. In this context, nurse leaders may have lost track of progress toward the goals they set in January. Some may …