April 2021

Supporting clients needs and wishes with the "I" form.

At Villa Tapiola, birthdays are celebrated properly, which is why the RAI assessment is always scheduled for their birthday month, and it underscores the importance of the assessment.


"I like fishing stories"

RAIsoft is an integral part of everyday life here at dementia home, Villa Tapiola, and all the information produced by RAI goes with it and turns into concrete actions.

Villa Tapiola has been using the RAIsoft software from the very beginning (2005). The RAIsoft.net program has become a natural part of the everyday life of dementia residents, and it is visible in many ways in the business. 

Tuula LaulajaDirector Tuula Laulaja says that the RAIsoft.net program is used for long term care and that they use the care plan module extensively. The care plan is created at the same time as the RAI assessment, so all the personal comments these clients make are important. 

– In the care plan, we always record the client’s comments in the "I" form. In this way, the clients' will and wishes will be better presented. For example: "I want wool socks at night". 

– When we make up a plan, the relatives play an important role. In the beginning, the relatives were also involved in the RAI assessment process itself, but it was put off for too long and the feedback was usually "will you just do it ...". Therefore, we changed the procedure so that the relatives are included in the care planning phase.

– The client's caregiver is responsible for the RAI assessment and the design of the care plan. The relatives can comment on the care plan and we change, correct, add, or remove things if necessary. Once we receive the feedback, we finalize the assessment and lock in the care plan. This also increases transparency, allowing the relatives to see that the things discussed are put into action.  

Get to know the clients

Villa Tapiola's common thread is customer orientation. It is visible in everything and is also recognized by relatives. 

- We have 44 patient places. I know every single one of our clients, their families, and even grandchildren. Now that the criteria for entering long-term care have intensified, we are getting more patients with worse health than ever before.  To understand each of our new clients, we make a comprehensive inquiry about their life through conversations with those closest to them. The better we know our clients, the easier it is for us to do our work," says Laulaja. 

- If the customer wants, we make so-called "digital stories": 2-3 minutes of film clips about the customer's life. A movie clip that can be viewed on a laptop or tablet whenever desired. 

- One day, one of our customers had woken up "on the wrong side". Then when we played the film clip, the customer had stated that I must have had a good life” 

Both the doctors and new caregivers at Villa Tapiola are also looking at the digital stories. They are important aids for getting to know the clients. These life stories have sparked many discussions. 

- Making digital stories also strengthens the cooperation between the caregiver and the relatives, Laulaja emphasizes.

Personal Chemistry and Workload

At Villa Tapiola, clients are divided into three groups depending on the need for care. 

- When the caregivers arrive at the shift, they choose two clients from each "basket". These clients chosen, are the caregiver's responsibility throughout the shift. 

So far, a lot of personal chemistry determines who chooses who.  

- Experience has shown that some get along better than others, Laulaja laughs. It is unnecessary to fight against this, instead, we try to exploit it. 

- For example, in a client's care plan it was recorded that "I like fishing stories ". One of our caregiver's sons is an avid fisherman, so this caregiver often takes the "fisherman-grandpa" as her responsibility when she works. They always have a lot to talk about. 

Making RAI assessments is a party

One of Villa Tapiola's established routines is to have the RAI assessment around the client's birthday. 

- This year’s main assessment is made close to their birthday, and the second assessment is made 6 months later. 

Placing the assessment this specific month is well thought out and emphasizes the importance: at the birthday party, the one being celebrated is at the center of attention and is asked carefully how they are feeling and what they want. 

Social media - an insight into Villa Tapiola 

Tuula Laulaja says that those who visit Villa Tapiola notice, how alert the clients are.

- They often comment that our clients seem to be so alert, they don't half-sleep in the arm-chairs. The relatives and even the clients seem to like that we have enough of outdated, old-fashioned furniture in dark wood.

In recent years, social media has also become more important.

- I usually tell our visitors and relatives to go on our Facebook page and you'll see what we're doing here. The corona era has, of course, limited our operations more than before. In 2019, we had a total of 170 different artists/actors visiting, but during 2020 we didn’t have a single visitor.

Laulaja points out that versatile and varied programs and activities are very important for clients. Here, too, the RAI assessment plays a major role: the overall assessment covers the entire lifetime, talking about their work career, leisure activities, and interests. Based on the information, it is easier to plan visits and programs that interest the residents.

- Even today, people often think in Finland that when a person grows old, you must dress in a black scarf, tie it under your chin, and sing hymns. Our clientele consists of a very diverse group. Many of our clients are well-traveled, have had international careers, eaten exotic dishes, have become accustomed to the theatre, attended concerts, intellectual conversations, and restaurant visits.

- These things, our patients are still longing for; therefore exhilarating visits and excursions are so important to our residents.