Constituent Services
Higgins Congratulates ElderWood Health Care at Lakewood On Recieving Top National Award For Quality Long-term Care
October 16, 2008

HAMBURG, N.Y. – Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-27) congratulated the ElderWood Health Care at Lakewood on being the first skilled nursing and rehabilitation facility in New York State to receive the American Health Care Association (AHCA) Step III Quality Award. Since the award was created in 1996, only six out of the nearly 17,000 skilled nursing facilities nationwide have earned this award.

           "This is a well deserved reward for a company with a 30 year tradition of providing outstanding care to Western New Yorkers," Higgins said. "I commend Robert Chur and the entire team of 2,800 for their success and commitment to serving five thousand people annually in their 17 top-rated facilities."

            “The AHCA Quality Awards are the single most prestigious recognition of quality within the long-term care profession, and the Step III Award is the ultimate recognition,” said AHCA President and CEO Bruce Yarwood.

“As proud as we are of this award, what’s significant is what it says about us – that ElderWood Health Care at Lakewood makes quality care our top priority,” said Administrator Deborah Urbank. “Residents and families place enormous trust in us. By striving to be the best skilled nursing facility in the country, we’re always working to keep that trust.” 

The AHCA Quality Award program is a progressive, three-step process. The three award levels are based on criteria adopted from the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, the nation’s premier recognition for quality achievement. Facilities must receive an award at each level to progress to the next level. ElderWood Health Care at Lakewood earned the Step I Award in 2004 and was the first in New York State to win the Step II Award in 2005.

To earn the Step III Quality Award, ElderWood Health Care at Lakewood submitted a 44-page application demonstrating superior performance in health care, customer satisfaction, financial, market, workforce, process and leadership outcomes over time. A site visit by AHCA examiners confirmed that quality procedures are carried out in the daily operation of the facility.

As part of the application process, ElderWood Health Care at Lakewood monitored patient, resident and family satisfaction using surveys administered by My InnerView Inc., a leading health care research organization. Lakewood’s satisfaction survey results far exceed national averages. Surveys administered from July 2007-June 2008 show that 100% of patients were satisfied with the quality of rehabilitation therapy at Lakewood. The national average is 89% satisfaction. While 76% of rehab patients nationwide would recommend their rehab facility to others, 98% of Lakewood patients would recommend the facility to family and friends.

“Our satisfaction survey results are strong, and they validate the hard work of our entire staff,” said Urbank. “But, achieving quality is a continuous process. We’re always evaluating the needs of our residents and patients and making positive changes.”

Since 2003, ElderWood Health Care at Lakewood has received five Innovative Practice Awards from the New York State Health Facilities Association (NYSHFA.) Lakewood highlighted these honors in its Step III Quality Award application as examples of how the facility implements programs that positively impact resident health, safety and quality of life.

ElderWood Health Care at Lakewood was honored for its outstanding achievement and presented with the Step III Quality Award during the AHCA’s 59th Annual Convention and Exposition, Oct. 5-8, in Nashville, Tenn. The facility is also featured in the October issue of Provider magazine. 

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