I am writing to let you know how much our family appreciates the staff at Orchard Park. In January 2018 when we were told mom was no longer able to live alone was one thing but when the doctors informed us she had dementia our hearts sank. We did not know how this horrible disease of the mind would change our mother or how it would change our lives. It was so very important and our number one priority mom spend her remaining time in this world in a caring environment. We found that special place at Orchard.
First impressions as you know is so important. We had driven all over Pearland and League City area and visited 7 different facilities and could not find a place for mom that made us feel comfortable taking her to. The reasons were the facilities smelt horrible and they did not offer anything extra to help mom with this horrible disease of the mind. Basically they offered a bed and someone to give mom her meds. I say this because they did not spend time with us, they handed us a brochure to read and nothing else…..I knew if they had no time to explain their facility or even show us around they would not have time for our mom either. Then a miracle happened, someone recommended checking out a place called Orchard and informed us they had a memory care unit. How well I remember that day, we were tired and worried there was no place that we could find that would meet what we wanted for mom which simply was a clean and caring environment. We decided lets go by and check out Orchard and the rest is history. The good folks at Orchard have become an extended part of our family and the care and attention mom has been shown over the past 20 months is proof to our family we choose the right place for mom.
First day mom was at Orchard I guess the look on my face showed how worried I was about mom with this new journey called dementia. I was walking out the door and Jill, the Memory Care Director said, “Your mom will be fine – let’s go in my office and talk.” She took time to explain all the activities they do on Reflections side, gave me material to read up on this horrible disease and introduced me to the book The 36-Hour Day. She put her arm around me and said this disease is going to be harder on the family than mom. I knew she understood the concerns we were going through and I knew then mom would be in good hands and me too. She told me I could call anytime and check up on mom (and as you know I have many times) which helped me so much knowing I had a contact name and number to call. To this day she still puts that arm around me to say “mom will be fine”. The folks in Memory Care Unit are more to you then just people that are sick, they are your family and you are so kind to them all and show much patience with the families.
The attention of care that mom receives on Reflection side is still there and I cannot tell you how wonderful and attentive Trish, Roshawna, Barbara, Delta and Latiquish are to mom. They are the best that we have had the pleasure to know and they too have become an extended part of our family. There has never been a time that I have called any of these folks that they have not returned my call. They all take the time to stop by and check in on mom and give me a report on how she is doing. Their compassion for ALL the residents in Reflections is comforting to the family and we know mom is in good hands.
I call Cindy Martinez mother’s guardian angel she has done wonders for my mom. Cindy keeps mom involved and because of Cindy’s persistence of mom needing to not just sit in her room she got mom (much to my surprise) to start going on little outings to get her out for fresh air. She has gotten mom to go to the main dining room with a few others for their meals and this has helped mom so much. She spends time and talks with mom when she gets upset, how she finds the time I do not t know cause she looks after all the folks in memory care the same way. She lets me know of any of moms personal needs. Cindy is awesome and can calm mom down and she has helped mom get adjusted to her new apartment as mom calls it.
I have noticed there has been changes in the last 4 to 5 months at Orchard and I give high kudos on the hiring of Yoko Daniel, Director of Nursing. Yoko has been attentive and helpful when I have any questions on moms meds. The changes I have seen that I know has to have come from Yoko have been noticed and she is supportive and protective of her team. Yoko is a TEAM BUILDER , she has the medical care of the residents as her top priority and it has been noticed by this family member. I cannot say enough about Yoko.
My brother and I will never forget one of the most important people there at Orchard, Bets Hersey. As I have mentioned before First impressions is so important. We will not forget the very first time we ever walked into Orchard and asked to speak to someone about the facility. While waiting we both said, “wow this facility is so clean and it does not smell like the others”… Then a woman walks out with a big smile and said “ Hello I’m Bets Hersey welcome to Orchard, let’s go into this office and tell me how we can help you.” We almost fell down, finally someone that wanted to sit down and talk to us……..
Bets spent 2 hours with us explaining all about Orchard and she talked with such pride about Orchard. She told us about the activities that were offered on the memory care side and I knew then that Orchard was more than just a bed for mom. Bets also talked to us about dementia and explained some things that we did not know. In other words Bets gave us HOPE which we needed so badly. Then she asked if we would like a tour of the ENTIRE facility (music to our ears). She took us all around introduced us to some of the folks that were there living on the assisted living side, we talked to them and it was a blessing that each person we talked to was so happy there. The entire time of touring we were so impressed how clean it was and then she took us to the memory care side and we kept seeing the techs giving lots of hugs to the folks in memory care…..
We left Orchard with a skip in our step got in the car and we looked at each other and said THIS IS THE PLACE FOR MOM.
I will never forget Bets on the day that mom moved in when she left the hospital. I was running around getting moms clothes getting her a bed delivered and worried how I would be able to be there to set up her room because I really needed to get back to the hospital for getting all her discharge stuff done. I called Bets and advised her what time the bed would be delivered and I was bringing her clothes and I guess she heard the “worry” and stress in my voice of getting back to the hospital as quick as I could. She said “ Ruth bring her clothes I will see to it that the bed is set up and I will mark her clothes and get her room ready, your place is at the hospital.” I cried all the way to the hospital for the kindness that Bets showed getting mom settled in. When mom arrived her room was all set up.
I am a firm believer that no facility can be scored a “10” there is always improvements that can be made however, at Orchard when there is a concern or problem you folks do make improvements and you do listen to the families. Example is when I wrote an e-mail to Penny Glasman and Bets Hersey on 4/11/19 concerning some concerns on why in the dining area things seemed to have changed. When my brother and I would join mother at meal time over a period of 2 mos. we noticed the little extras that was once there for the residents was missing. Little things like hot coffee (coffee was cold), butter, coffee creamers, jelly, crackers. The dining rooms on both sides were not getting these little extras. So on behave of all the residents I wrote an e-mail… I received a call from Penny the same day and she asked what else had changed in the dining area. In other words my e-mail did not fall on deaf ears and the dining areas have improved. It’s not perfect but improvements have been made. Like I said Orchard does listen to the families when the management are made aware of any concerns and try to fix or improve the situation.
We would like to thank the staff especially on the memory care side for the handling and attention given to our mom that the entire team shows her, you folks leave her with her PRIDE AND DIGNITY ! I thank GOD every day for Orchard, I lay my head on my pillow at night and not worry & wonder if mom is safe. I KNOW SHE IS. Thanks to all of you.