Douglas County Health Center - Omaha, NE has yet not published prices.
I have a relative in long-term care at DCHC and am not at all pleased with the quality of care provided. On the plus side there are quite a few activities provided for residents/patients and the food is actually fairly good and healthy. But the doctor-to-patient ratio is generally quite high. I've found some of the nurses, particularly on the Fourth Floor, to be rude and unhelpful. For the prices charged - which are all over the map - we've found that that my relative's roommate is paying one-tenth as much as we are - anyway, for the rates Douglas County Health Center charges I think the care should be top notch. Also, I question security. My relative has wandered away from the facility on at least one occasion and police had to be called to track him down. For a facility that supposedly prides itself on Alzheimer's Care this is not at all good.
Again, if you're looking for lots of activities - puzzles, Bingo, games, choral concerts and such - then this place is fine. If that's not your primary focus, you can do better elsewhere.
Patient Centered Skilled Nursing Care
We recently placed my husband at DCHC for Skilled Nursing Rehabilitative Care and found the medical care to be excellent. At times care may be delayed due to the patient's activity levels, such as being on the floor and able to receive medications, or being off the floor, in Physical Therapy. The Physical Therapy personnel will come to the patient if necessary, as will Occupational Therapy staff.
Staff can be challenging at times because, in my experience, many speak "adapted-English," i.e., many have foreign accents that may make daily patient care challenging for patient understanding. RN and LPN staff are excellent, but can be quite hurried, as well as harried, due to patient: nurse ratios. CNA staffing is where I found the majority of the "adapted-English" speakers, as the patient comes into contact with this part of the healthcare team the most. One advisory here : CNAs, by law, are not allowed to perform nursing functions, such as give medications. (This is, very wisely, considered an LPN and RN function and there's a whole lot of education that goes into that ability.)
Cleanliness can be effected by patient bowel and urine incontinence, so sometimes when you go into a ward, odors might smack you in the face, so to speak. These accidents are taken seriously and cleaned up immediately!! Cudos to them in this category!! Patients, when able, are asked to go to meals in a central dining area. This helps them develop rapport with other patients. They are allowed to take their meals in their rooms if needed.
The newly remodeled Rehabilitation ward is just wonderful. Staff are kind and fun to be around, even when they are busy. They're all about the patient care and I liked seeing that in this type of facility. The longer-term wards can be described as compact when compared to the Rehab ward but staff make up for this in terms of the level of care. Sometimes being closer together can be a good thing. On Rehab, the patient is given a single or double room, depending on needs. As other wards are being remodeled, they to, will go to this arrangement. One note here: If the patient is placed in a double occupancy room, some may not like their room mates. If this is brought up to the nursing staff, they will "try" to place the patient in another room, depending on availability.
Meals may get a little redundant at times, especially breakfast, which generally consists of cold cereal, hot oatmeal or farina, toast, and coffee, etc.. No special effort is made to change this fact, but rarely, they will serve some sort of meat with the daily scrambled eggs. They are probably trying to follow ADA guidelines which have recently been updated to push the "less meat protein choice" for all of us in general, as we tend to eat more meat proteins than we need too. This is hard on meat-loving carnivores, like my husband. They do not do carb counts for patients, but will monitor what the patient is eating, especially if they are diabetic. If the patient is able to make their own choices they are expected to show some responsibility in their meal selection.
Common sense says that people in too tight of an environment will pass along illness. I do not doubt this for a second as we recently underwent a ward quarantine due to the "Flu-bug" that was going around. My husband managed to miss coming down with the flu, but due to his own compromised immune system, came down with Pneumonia, which I'm assuming was passed to him by his room mate. They both ended up in the hospital due to this. They do pay attention to their nosocomial hospital infection rates and do have an Infection Control Officer. I love this factor. Sadly; one other fact remains a sticking point in this category: they do NOT INFORM family members of a quarantine or infectious pathogen BEFORE members of the family arrive for a visit. This is somewhat disheartening when compared to other marked improvements within the hospital
Pricing for services can be an issue. Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy are considered ancillary and therefore, not necessarily needed for many of the patients. I believe they overcharge for these services and have too small of a staff, so some patients may get missed.
All in all, Douglas County Health Center has improved markedly in the past few years and now have a Five-Star rating among Skilled Nursing Homes in the nation. I am pleased with this improvement because I grew up in the area and DCHC always had a bad reputation. They have really changed in a good way. Care is focused around the patient and not so much, around the family of the patient. They do listen and comply, as best they can, to family-member concerns. One suggestion, as I spent many days and nights up there with my husband: Please make the meals for significant family members free. I'm not asking for all family members, just spouses or children. (The ones who come up to visit the most) DCHC has a system kind of like this, but it falls short in that, when the patient is admitted, they are issued 3 meal tickets for family member use. When those 3 tickets are used up, the family member must pay a small but nominal fee in advance of the meal. As a family member who is around alot, I performed many functions myself which helped free up staff for other patients. I believe I earn my "free" meals.
Hope this analysis helps everyone looking for extended Skilled Nursing Care. My husband was a patient at DCHC for seven (7) months and I spent many days and nights with him, so I believe that I can make a knowledgeable evaluation of care offered at DCHC.
Douglas County Health Center provides compassionate and personal skilled care 24 hours a day. We specialize in providing rehabilitation services onsite to help our residents regain their independence and return to their homes.We offer 254 Long Term Care beds which include skilled nursing, Alzheimer's and dementia care. All 254 beds are dually certified for care of persons with Medicare and Medicaid. We are also happy to offer 21 private and 3 double occupancy apartments at our assisted living facility. Each apartment comes complete with a kitchenette including a microwave, counter, cupboards, refrigerator and a sit down shower in the bathroom. We also have buffet/family style dining for our assisted living facility residents with choices of various menu items for all three meals.