Posted: May 26, 2021
Aase Haugen introduced Decorah’s only Chronic Confusion or Dementing Illness (CCDI) unit in 2016 to provide care for people with intermediate and advanced dementia. Earlier this year, the Aase Haugen Foundation kicked off their annual fund to provide new vinyl-covered lift recliners and a big screen smart TV to the CCDI unit. The goal of the campaign was $9,000. “We were blessed to receive so much support from community individuals, churches, and the Winneshiek County Community Foundation,” says Paul Hexom, Aase Haugen Foundation president. “Gifts to the fund actually totaled more than $16,000 and this means we can do even more for the residents in the CCDI unit.”
In addition to adding seven lift recliners and the 70-inch big screen smart TV, the foundation provided the residents with two dementia baby dolls (which can decrease stress and agitation), new waterproof card games, fidget/activity tools, a U-shaped table to set up activities with several residents at one time, a large cedar raised garden along with garden tools and equipment, and three years of streaming subscription to the customized Memory Lane streaming TV channel.
Memory Lane programming is comforting and reassuring as it provides customized morning, afternoon and evening programming specifically designed to work well with people living with dementia and their distinctive cognitive needs. According to developers, the goals of Memory-Lane are to provide a useful, personalized intervention to lessen the neuropsychological symptoms of dementia, such as wandering, calling out, decreased alertness, anxiety, and agitation. Memory-Lane has been shown to relieve stress levels and in so doing, helps to create positive, cooperative interactions with caregivers as well.
Aase Haugen’s CCDI unit can care for up to 23 people as they journey through dementia with their families. “Caring for folks in this unit can be particularly challenging as their needs are different than our general nursing home population,” says Orson Bauder, Aase Haugen administrator. “We are grateful for our outstanding staff who focus on individual needs as well as the needs of the group to provide meaningful activities each day and the 24-hour quality care and attention they need. These generous gifts from donors are going to enhance and enrich the lives of people who live here, and from the bottom of our hearts, we are so grateful for the support.”