By Jean Claire Monroe, Director of Public Relations
“Don’t you think its time for me to go to a nursing home?”
My mother’s words shocked my family that afternoon not so long ago. Very few people are willing to surrender their family home and stability in favor of a nursing home. But my mother, diagnosed with vascular dementia, had something else in mind; she no longer wanted to be a burden to her family. Though she was never a burden, we needed help.
Before selecting a nursing home, my family understood that the people you spend your time with have a great impact on the kind of life you live. When selecting a nursing home, known professionally as a skilled nursing center, families understand that the right place has the right people — ones that will inspire residents to thrive while maintaining their identities. And, in October of 2010 — four years before I joined the staff — my family selected Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center.
At Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center (LHRC), our staff is offered the unique opportunity to make a difference in a person’s life. Founded in 1981 by the Alabama-Mississippi Conference of Seventh Day Adventists, Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center was originally named Adventist Health Center. LHRC has recently renovated to include modern electric beds, spa-like showers and baths and a fine dining atmosphere. Under new management, LHRC is committed to the highest standards of care and compassion.
Located three miles south of Purvis, Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center offers a wide variety of services including short-term rehabilitative care, a secure memory care unit, and long-term residential living. It is our mission to provide quality health care services in a fiscally responsible manner, which contributes to the physical, psychological, social, and spiritual well being of the patients and community we serve. Director of Nursing Christy Lambert states, “Working at Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center is a way of life to me. It is the definition of home, security, comfort and love. We carry the family atmosphere throughout our facility. These are just a few of the many reasons I too trust Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center with the care of my immediate family.”
Simply walking through the halls of Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center can be an adventure! You are likely to hear a former band director practicing scales on the piano, residents leading each other in Bible study, gentlemen playing cards and laughing or ladies crocheting quietly in the library. Residents maintain their identities by living one day at a time while making the most of every moment.
Beloved local pastor Reverend Louis Nicolosi shared the story of his transition from home to Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center. Seemingly approaching the end of his ministry and life, Reverend Nicolosi soon discovered his ministry was drawing him to a new path — a path that led him to the doors of LHRC. He leads Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center residents in weekly Bible study and can often be found praying and visiting with residents one-on-one. Lives continue to be enriched by his presence, and he is proud to call Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation home.
Many older adults look forward to their “golden years”. However, those with declining health may fear or even dread the years to come. At Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, we understand that the “golden years” consist of what you make of them. With stability and social stimulation, our residents can find joy in their “golden years” through an active and unique activities program. Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center pairs residents with similar interests and abilities with an activity program that gives each resident an opportunity to thrive. Additionally, the knowledge and enthusiasm from the activities support staff allow for multiple activities to take place simultaneously, maximizing time for the greatest level of achievement. LHRC’s activities director Mary Davenport shared, “The residents here are my family. Knowing them in this way, I am able to show love and respect by providing meaningful interactions. I want every day to matter. When I lay my head down at night, I am able to rest knowing that their needs have been met and their lives continue to be full. To me that is the definition of the ‘golden years.’”
My family is eternally grateful for Mary and her team. Upon arrival, my mother would not leave her room. She insisted on staying in her room alone, not having any desire to be a part of the world around her. Mom began losing weight and retreating further inside herself. With Mary’s encouragement and genuine friendship, Mother is now an active and very social resident at Lamar. In many ways one could say Mary saved my mother’s life.
Standing alongside Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center’s commitment to care is our incomparable Rehabilitation team. On-site physical, occupational, and speech therapists are available to assist both short-term and long-term residents by improving skills and behaviors needed for activities of daily living and community involvement. The goal of our therapeutic team is to restore, remediate or rehabilitate residents in order to improve functioning and independence as well as reduce or eliminate the effects of illness or disability. Our team consistently weaves the concept of healthy living into treatment to ensure not only improved functioning, but also enhance independence and successful involvement in all aspects of life.
After a full day in activities or therapy, residents work up a healthy appetite. Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center strives to provide traditional southern cuisine with the freshest ingredients available to ensure the comfort of a home-cooked meal. Whether enjoying a meal together in our dining rooms or tea and coffee on the patio, residents are sure to feel connected to one another.
Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation is privileged to have students from Bass Memorial Academy work alongside our residents and staff. Students gain valuable work experience while also receiving pay for school tuition assistance. The residents truly enjoy spending time with these young people. Students become an actively involved part of everyday activities and are able to assist residents in many different ways — sharing their love of life, excitement and youth to help our seniors stay young at heart.
At the heart of Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center is our dynamic memory care unit. Our secure, female-only memory care unit is unique in many ways including specialized activities, private dining, and access to a secure courtyard for enjoying the great outdoors. All staff is specially trained in Alzheimer’s and other related dementia programming to provide optimal encouragement and stimulation to residents in the varying stages of the disease processes.
At Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, we understand that no one can take better care of a loved one than family. Every family member arrives at the decision to place a loved one in a long-term care facility based on differing circumstances. It is a decision based on care, security or a combination of reasons. That is why we stand by our belief to look at every resident as a member of our personal family. Remember, you have given this decision much thought, and now you are doing what you feel is best for your loved one. Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center is here to make the transition as loving as possible.
Welcome to Our Family!
Jean Claire Monroe is the Director of Public Relations for Lamar Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center. If you are interested in learning more about Alzheimer’s or senior related resources, please visit Lamar Healthcare & Rehabilitation Center on the web at www.LamarHRC.com or by calling 601-794-8566.
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