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Photograph of several older men sitting on park benches. One is wearing a hat. Another is wearing a skullcap. Photo source: Administration on Aging, DHHS Learning Activities

Organizational Systems Competency

Work effectively within and across organizational systems to promote quality care for older persons.


Develop your Organizational Systems Competency by completing some or all of these learning activities. Choose the ones that are the most useful and appealing as you prepare to demonstrate your Organizational Systems Competency. You might want to explore them all, to see what resources are here for sharing with others in your work setting or community. Introductory Video for the Organizational Systems Competency

If you prefer, you can read a transcript of the video.

Overview of Learning Activities:  Learning Activities for the Organizational Systems Competency are divided into three major areas of focus:


Interdisciplinary Teams

Older Adults bring complex challenges to the health care system. They require a plan of care that involves more than one health care discipline. Effective teamwork within and across organizational systems is necessary to promote quality care for older adults. 

Drawing of four persons having a team meeting  All persons who work with older adults need to be knowledgeable about the principles of effective teams.
Click on the Internet to Explore the GITT  Picture of the letters http:

Note: The internet link provided here was active at the time these Older Adult Focus materials were prepared. If the link is no longer active, try searching for the same or similar content using the name of the organization or the title provided.

Geriatric Interdisciplinary Team Training Program

http://www.gittprogram.org

The Geriatric Interdisciplinary Team Training Program (GITT), sponsored by the John A. Hartford Foundation, Inc., provides team training information and exercises for health care providers and organizations who want to improve care for older adults. 

Solve a Drag and Drop Puzzle Drawing of a computer mouse

Use your knowledge of the roles of members of an interdisciplinary health care team to complete this Interdisciplinary Team Drag and Drop Puzzle. Enjoy!

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Transitions Between Health Care Settings

Transitions between care settings are often times of physical and emotional vulnerability for older adults. Communication between health care providers and coordination of care can avert or alleviate some of the problems that may otherwise occur. In facilities with more than one unit, the transition between units or levels of care also needs careful coordination of care for best outcomes for older adults.  Drawing of an orderly guiding the wheelchair of an older woman out of a hospital
Drawing of a computer mouse Solve Another Drag and Drop Puzzle

Use this Care Settings Drag and Drop Puzzle to review terms for various living arrangements for older adults. 

Read Two Articles Picture of two journal articles

Coordinating Care

Corbett, C. F., Setter, S. M., Daratha, K.B., Neumiller, J. J., Wood, L. D. (2010). Nurse identified hospital to home medication discrepancies: Implications for improving transitional care. Geriatric Nursing, 31(3), 188-196.

Nurse to Nurse Communication during Transitions

Cortes, T.A., Wexler, S., & Fitzpatrick, J.J. (2004). The transition between hospitals and nursing homes: Improving nurse to nurse communication. Journal of Gerontological Nursing, 30(6), 10-15. 

Drawing of an ear listening to a story Listen to a True Clinical Story about Multiple Transitions Between Health Care Settings

Listen to Mrs. Morton's Multiple Transitions, narrated by Linda Felver, Ph.D., R.N. This true story involves six health care setting transitions for a 92-year-old woman in less than 2 months. The story lasts 10 minutes, so you might want to get comfortable before you start listening. Stay with it to hear the happy ending! If you prefer, you can read a transcript of the story. 

Read an Article about Older Adult's Experiences During Transitions Picture of two journal articles

Read one or both of these articles to learn more about experiences of older adults during transitions between care settings.

Transition from Acute Care to a Community-Based Care Setting

Gladden, J.C. (2000). Information exchange: Critical connections to older adult decision-making during health care transitions. Geriatric Nursing, 21(4), 213-218.

Transition from Home to Nursing Home

Shearer, N.B. (2002). Endnotes: Loss of power within the nursing home zone. Journal of Gerontological Nursing, 28(11), 54-56.

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Helping Older Adults Connect to Systems for Obtaining Resources

Building a network of systems for obtaining information, resources, and support is important for older adults and their families. 

                 
Nurses and other professionals can assist in connecting older adults and their families to these systems and can encourage them to participate. Familiarize yourself with the following examples of systems useful for older adults.
Drawing of three people working together to build a network of resources

Note: The internet links provided here were active at the time these Older Adult Focus materials were prepared. If a link is no longer active, try searching for the same or similar content using the name of the organization or the title provided.

Internet Connections to Federally-Supported Programs

Aging Services Network

http://www.eldercare.gov/eldercare/Public/resources/fact_sheets/aging_services.asp

Read this fact sheet about the Aging Services Network for an overview of the federal, state, and local-level system of services for older adults that was initiated by the Older Americans Act in 1965. 

Medicare

http://www.medicare.gov

If you are not familiar with Medicare, now is your chance to develop a basic knowledge of it. Browse around the site until you can answer the following questions.

Read an Article about Changes in Medicare

Welton, J.M. (2008). Implications of Medicare reimbursement changes related to inpatient nursing care quality. Journal of Nursing Administration, 38(7/8), 325-330.

Resident Councils and Family Councils in Long-Term Care Facilities

Resident councils help older adults who live in long-term care facilities voice their opinions, express their needs, and request action. Visit this website to find out more about resident councils.

Citizens for Better Care

http://www.cbcmi.org/publications/r_council_fs.htm

Family councils enable the families of older adults who live in long-term care facilities to voice their concerns and advocate for change. Visit the following website to find out more about family councils.

National Citizen's Coalition for Nursing Home Reform (NCCNHR)

http://www.nccnhr.org

Visit a resident council or family council meeting at a facility in your area. If you are unable to attend a meeting, read the minutes of a resident or family council meeting and talk with a council member about issues discussed and decisions made at the meeting.

Disasters and Older Adults

In disasters, older adults are particularly vulnerable. Communities need to have a plan and work together to meet the needs of these individuals in emergency situations. Read about the challenging issues that older adults faced after Hurricane Katrina hit the gulf coast in 2005 and recommendations provided to prevent the potential challenges older adults face in disaster situations.

Recommendations for Best Practices in the Management of Elderly Disaster Victims
http://www.bcm.edu/pdf/bestpractices.pdf

Internet Resources Related to Various Disease Conditions

Here is a sample of useful disease-related sites that older adults can use for information and support. What others can you add to the list?

Drawing of an Asian older woman using a computer National Osteoporosis Foundation

http://www.nof.org

American Heart Association

http://www.americanheart.org

American Parkinson Disease Association

http://www.apdaparkinson.org

American Diabetes Association

http://www.diabetes.org

Drawing of an older man using a computer

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After you have completed some or all of these Learning Activities, proceed to the Competency Demonstration.

Developed by J. Hagan and L. Felver; Revised 2010

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