JEFFERSON CITY — The St. Louis Veterans Home on Monday reported major improvements in key areas of the quality of care provided to Veterans, increases in staffing levels, and a steep reduction in involuntary employee overtime. The presentation came during the Missouri Veterans Commission’s quarterly meeting in Jefferson City, which was attended by many members of Missouri’s Veterans’ service organizations.
Improved areas of performance included:
- An 80 percent reduction in the number of new facility-acquired pressure ulcers (month to date) for January compared to the monthly average for the last 36 months (per 100 residents).
- A 35 percent reduction in resident fall occurrences month to date for January compared to the monthly average for the last 24 months (per 100 residents).
- 13 new full-time certified nursing assistants from a temporary staffing service have been trained and are now working at the facility; nine additional CNAs are undergoing training and orientation this week; and 20 additional CNAs are completing the final steps to being hired to work at the St. Louis Home.
- A 93 percent reduction in involuntary employee overtime worked compared to last month.
An independent investigation report released in December was highly critical of the quality of care at the St. Louis Home. The report identified the high number of facility-acquired pressure ulcers and falls by residents, staffing shortages, and involuntary overtime as key concerns involving the quality of care at the home. The investigation, by Harmony Healthcare International, a healthcare consulting firm whose services include nursing home audits, compliance reviews and monitoring to ensure quality patient care, was commissioned by the Missouri Department of Public Safety at the direction of Gov. Eric Greitens.
Stan Smith, who became interim administrator at the St. Louis Home on Jan. 2, also told the commission that to promote better communication with Veterans and their families, the home leadership team has conducted six “stakeholder forums” – meetings with residents, family members and community Veterans organizations since December.
Missouri Veterans Commission Interim Executive Director Colonel Grace Link, who participates in the weekly meetings at the home, said she’s impressed improvements at the St. Louis facility.
“There is a determination at every level of our organization to make things better at the St. Louis Home and provide our Veterans with the care they deserve,” Link said. “Things are moving in the right direction so quickly because of the commitment and dedication of the workforce at the St. Louis Home and the cooperative spirit of our Veterans and their families.”
In addition to Smith’s presentation on the St. Louis Home, the administrators of the commission’s six other homes – in Cameron, Cape Girardeau, Mexico, Mount Vernon, St. James and Warrensburg – updated the commission on operations at their homes. Support was voiced by some of the scores of people in attendance at the meeting.
Veterans Commission Chairman Tim Noonan thanked the administrators and their staffs for their dedicated work, and encouraged them to work as a team to develop best practices, and pilot new ways to serve the changing needs of the next generations of Missouri Veterans.
The Missouri Veterans Commission, a division of the Department of Public Safety, operates seven State Veterans Homes, five State Veterans Cemeteries, and the Veterans Services Program. The Commission is committed to honoring and serving Missouri’s Veterans whose dedication and sacrifices have preserved our nation and its freedoms. For more information about the Missouri Veterans Commission programs, call (573) 751-3779, online at http://www.mvc.dps.mo.gov, or facebook.com/MissouriVeteransCommission.