Residents at Premier at Susquehanna Graduate from Pennsylvania PEER Program for Seniors

Wednesday, May 30, 2018 Senior Health News
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Statewide program empowers nursing home residents to advocate for themselves

MILLERSBURG, Pa., May 29, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Four residents at Premier at Susquehanna

for Nursing and Rehabilitation recently celebrated their graduation from the PEER (Pennsylvania's Empowered Expert Residents) Program, which trains residents at long-term care facilities to serve as advocates that enhance the quality of care and life for their peers, by working with both Premier staff and their fellow residents.

The PEER group participated in five 2-hour training sessions; providing them with the education and tools they need to support their fellow residents. Sessions include information on resident rights, various roles of facility staff, tools-such as the "ladder of resolution" – that can be used in solving problems, respecting confidentiality and how to report abuse.

"As a resident, I found the training helpful and useful," said graduate resident Blaine Paulus. "The training modules provide a lot of good information that will help us help those in need. We are fortunate to have an engaged facility that encourages us to remain active and involved, and I am really looking forward to serving as a PEER representative."

Graduates were presented with a diploma, special name badge and door sign by Shannon Vallier, Long Term Care Ombudsman for Dauphin County Area Agency on Aging. Graduates from Premier at Susquehanna are: Norma Graeff, Blaine Paulus, Mary Saltzer and Janyce Vansickle.

Dan Daub, Administrator at Premier at Susquehanna, stated, "We are very proud of our latest group of residents upon the completion of their PEER Training. Their commitment to helping others is commendable, and our staff will support their efforts in every way possible. We believe a strong PEER program enhances our facility and the quality of life for each of our residents. We appreciate the support of the Agency on Aging as well as our Ombudsman in helping our residents attain this goal!"

Premier at Susquehanna is one of only five PEER-participating facilities in Dauphin County.

Media Contact: Jeff Deutsch,

About Pennsylvania's Empowered Expert Residents (PEER) Program

The State Long-Term Care Ombudsman Office expanded its volunteer efforts in training residents living in long-term care facilities when it implemented the PEER program in 2002. State certified ombudsmen teach residents residing in long-term care (LTC) facilities about their rights and how to advocate and maintain their rights for themselves and their fellow peers.

Residents are taught how to work with facility staff to enhance their quality of care and life for all residents. Self-resolution and empowerment are themes consistently emphasized in all statewide trainings. The PEER program also offers residents additional information and resources that helps them to be a part of the solution.

In Pennsylvania, we believe our PEERs become the residents with the solutions. Currently, the program exists in 58 out of the 67 counties, and over 2,100 residents have been trained. Our goal is to continue to expand the program statewide.

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SOURCE Premier at Susquehanna for Nursing and Rehabilitation

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