We often take the little things in life for granted. Stopping by a friend’s house on the way home from work. Grabbing a movie on a Tuesday night just to get out of the house. Maybe a last-minute decision to get away for the weekend. Small occurrences, yet we’d likely miss those activities if they didn’t occur.
The Veterans residing in the Wilkes-Barre’s Community Living Center (CLC) find the importance of these “small occurrences” more significant than most. All too often, their thoughts of health care center on exams and medications without considering the importance of smiles, laughter and camaraderie.
Veteran Charlie Anistranski takes part in the fishing trip.
High-quality care includes social activities
At Wilkes-Barre, we recognize that high-quality health care must include a variety of social engagement and activities.
A recent day trip to Lake Ladore had residents talking for weeks, both before and after the trip. Lake Ladore gave residents the opportunity to take in some fresh air, boast about their fishing skills and reminisce of past catches with anyone who would listen.
Sitting at the water’s edge, there were few thoughts of wheelchairs, medications and limitations.
The fishermen didn’t measure their catch. Still, to hear their tales of the trip, you might think they were catching marlin in the Florida Keys.
The importance of variety
“It’s important that we offer a variety of activities to our residents,” said Linda Zaneski, associate chief of Nursing Services – Geriatrics & Extended Care. The particular activity isn’t really important. Our residents get excited for the anticipation and expectation. It’s the activity that helps them forget their worries and allows their memories to take them to another place and time, even if it’s just for a little while.”
At the Wilkes-Barre’s CLC, it’s our goal to treat the entire Veteran.
John Baloga is a public affairs specialist at the Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center. He has over 30 years of experience in the creative services field.