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annette van de kamp-wright
Jewish Press Editor
Recently, Chris Ulven, Executive Director of the Rose Blumkin Jewish Home, received a very special visitor. Native Israeli Amichai Levy, Head of Professional Services at Point RF, an Israeli based company, came to finalize a project that’s been a long time coming: the installation of a new state-of-the-art access control and wander prevention system at the Home.
According to their website (pointrf.com), “PointRF was founded in 2013 and serves the US Long Term Care market. It provides Skilled Nursing Facilities with a single, affordable care management system that observes 24-7, reports and alerts on a resident’s locations, staff interaction and vitals by communicating reliable resident status information. Such continuous monitoring and real-time awareness and reporting helps the administrators and staff avoid re-hospitalizations, prevent accidents, better manage patient needs, monitor daily activities and ultimately improve the quality of care, the facility’s reimbursement and episode management.”
“Former Director of Operations, Josh Gurock, put an enormous amount of research into this project,” Chris said, “and he concluded this was the best of the best. We took a little extra time, because that allowed us to install the very latest version of the security system. Otherwise, we would have had to upgrade immediately, so this was good timing for us.”
The new system cuts down on alarm frequency and notifies relevant caregivers, rather than the entire building.
“Previously,” Chris said, “if a resident approached an exterior door within five to eight feet, the alarm would respond to their wander-prevention bracelet, whether that door was open or closed. This new system only sounds the alarm if the door is actually open, while simultaneously sending an alert to that resident’s neighborhood. Each neighborhood has its own screen affixed to the wall, where they can receive relevant information in real time. Staff can respond faster and be more effective when they receive such immediate and targeted communication.”
With an ever-increasing desire for security, the Home also opted for additional tools, such as the ability to put the building on lockdown when needed. When, in 2016, an unidentified object was found on 132nd Street in front of the building, it took some time for the police department to decide it was harmless.
“With the No Wander system, if things like that happen, we can go to immediate lockdown, which makes for a much more secure environment and eliminates some previous vulnerabilities with our doors,” Chris said.
Another benefit is the overall increase of confidence.
“Under the previous system, we had to double check doors all the time,” Chris said. “In addition, we have future opportunities to make this system even more robust by implementing upgrades when they become available. For instance, later this year we will include real time location services for those residents who are at risk of elopement. Another upgrade we are looking forward to is the inclusion of help buttons on the bracelets themselves that can be activated any time by the resident. This can be used instead of, or in addition to, the traditional call light system.”
Visitors to the Home will hopefully find the new keypads for building entry to be much more user friendly.
“Once all the bugs are worked out, we should have a much quieter Home for our residents, guests and staff to enjoy. We are working toward that goal every day as we learn and tweak the system to fit our needs,” Ulven concluded.