The Broadway mega-smash Hamilton concludes by asking, “Who lives, who dies, who tells your story?” For those of us who care for others at Florida’s skilled nursing care centers, the answer is clear — the story is told by our cherished residents, whose lives span history from surviving the Great Depression to texting with their grand kids. As our Florida Health Care Association members celebrate National Skilled Nursing Care Week, we are all reminded that it is the unique life stories, perspectives, and experiences of our residents and the commitment of our outstanding health care professionals that make Florida a national leader in quality long term care.
This profession like no other, simultaneously offering caregivers both a history lesson and a course in tolerance and compassion. The diverse backgrounds, cultures, and views of those who come together to live under the same roof — often in the same room — highlight just how much wisdom and knowledge we can gain by caring for our elders. Florida’s skilled nursing care centers, often referred to as nursing homes, care for over 70,000 seniors and people with disabilities. Each of them has a unique story to tell. In St. Petersburg, one resident’s tale relates the love story that began through an act of heroism, while another resident in Milton is about an earlier life as a master trombone, trumpet, and saxophone player. There is no end to these sagas as they are recounted in the community area of a skilled nursing care center.
FHCA encourages you to stop in and visit one of Florida’s many skilled nursing care centers this week to celebrate the life stories of these residents. While you’re there be sure to thank a caregiver – over 250,000 strong – who are dedicated to making sure these residents are cared for with compassion, dignity and respect. Worlds apart can be brought closer together through the simple sharing of memories.