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Health // Doctor in the House
Rasa Fournier

Care, Nursing Service Facilities

Calvin Hara
Administrator at Manoa Cottage Kaimuki

Where did you receive your schooling and training?

After graduating from Kalani High School, I attended the University of California-Davis, majoring in applied behavioral sciences. I have been providing for the needs of kupuna, from free-standing skilled nursing facilities to multi-level retirement communities with independent living, assisted living, memory care and skilled nursing on a campus setting in the Sacramento area. I am a licensed nursing home administrator in California and Hawaii, and a licensed assisted-living administrator in California. In addition, I am certified as an aging services professional (CASP) through the University of North Texas Coalition for Leadership in Aging Services. I am also ServSafe Certified, which pertains to food safety.

How long have you been involved in nursing home caregiving?

My career spans more than 25 years in long-term care.

Are Manoa Cottage and Manoa Cottage Kaimuki Nursing Home two different things?

Manoa Cottage and Manoa Cottage Kaimuki are sister facilities, both owned and run by the Shim family. The difference between them is the level of care. Manoa Cottage started in 1995 as a single care home in Manoa. It now consists of three adjacent care homes, which share a common patio area. They have provided care in a home-like environment for years.

Manoa Cottage Kaimuki is a skilled nursing facility – offering a higher level of care – which opened nearly two years ago. Although it relishes the Manoa Cottage brand, it is located in the Kaimuki-Kapahulu area near Kaimuki High School. Manoa Cottage Kaimuki specializes in the care of residents with dementia, memory loss and Alzheimer’s-type dementia.

What kind of services and specialized care does each facility offer?

The two communities are two steps of a continuum of care. We provide support in activities of daily living among our 24 residents at Manoa Cottage. This support can include medication, bathing and dressing assistance. Our residents may not be able to live independently at home. At the care home, however, we provide assistance so they can remain as independent as possible for as long as possible.

Our nursing home is able to care for residents who need more intensive assistance with not only their daily activities but health care needs. This location has a registered nurse on duty 24/7, which allows us to truly take care of the special medical needs of our kupuna. What sets Manoa Cottage Kaimuki apart is its specialization in care for those with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. Many long-term care facilities find caring for people with the complex behaviors associated with dementia challenging, especially when also caring for the rest of the elderly population. Because of our small size, we are able to delve deeper into the associated behaviors and focus on behavior modification. We find this helps us to treat the related behaviors with little or none of the medications we often see used.

What activities and programs are patients able to engage in at your facilities?

The two facilities have their similarities and differences. We have activity staff at both facilities who are excellent at engaging residents in whatever activity is at hand. Our staff really gets to know each resident individually and learns how to engage each in their own unique way. Engagement is key to any activity. Some of our activities include cooking, indoor bowling, puzzles, games, lunch outings, arts and crafts, hula, singing, exercise and stretching (group or one-on-one), and holiday and event outings.

On the care-home side, we have a fish pond where we’ve held fishing derbies. The residents love it. We recently had the Ebb Tides and Lanakila Enka music groups entertain residents. As the weather warms, we will be having outings to restaurants and Honolulu Zoo and Waikiki Aquarium. Ehu, a therapy dog, services residents at both facilities.

The two facilities differ in that the activities staff at Manoa Cottage Kaimuki are trained for more advanced stages of dementia and Alzheimer’s. The activities are resident-focused in group and individualized activities. Activities also are specific to residents with memory care needs. Community volunteers and groups support the resident activity program.

What range of specialists are available to your patients?

At both our nursing home and care home, the residents have access to physical, occupational or speech therapists with the hope of keeping them as active as possible. Our registered dietitian works with residents at both locations to determine dietary needs. Both communities also have contracts with all four hospice providers on the island. At our nursing home, all residents are followed closely by a physician who regularly visits them at the facility. On the nursing home side, we also have a medical director, Dr. Aida Wen, as well as a podiatrist, psychiatrist, dentist and social worker available to meet resident and family needs.

How many patients do the facilities accommodate?

Manoa Cottage is licensed for 24 residents with private and semi-private room configurations. Manoa Cottage Kaimuki is licensed for 27 residents and has private, semi-private and shared rooms.

What are some of the most important considerations that must be met when providing care at a nursing home?

Compassion and the highest quality of care of kupuna is at the top of the list. Our kupuna have taught and shared their rich culture with us. We must care for the kupuna in their time of need, with the best caregivers and support staff, offering 24-hour compassionate care. Manoa Cottage Kaimuki is pleased, as a newer facility, to offer 24-hour care in a homelike setting, in a neighborhood familiar to all, close to many family members and close to doctors and hospitals in Honolulu. As many kupuna are entering their 80s, 90s and are centenarians, the onset and prevalence of memory care needs necessitates that a nursing facility such as Manoa Cottage Kaimuki offer specialized care.

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