By Anne Polta, West Central Tribune, Friday, July 12, 2013 —WILLMAR–The distances in the Rice Care Center’s newly renovated east wing are shorter for aging legs to walk. There are private rooms and baths, a dining room overlooking a garden, and a kitchen serving up meals and coffee whenever the residents want.
Most of all, the environment says “home.”When Bev Bruse accompanied a resident out to the garden on a recent morning to cut fresh roses, they began chatting about flowers.“I found out she really liked her gardening when she was at home,” said Bruse, the household coordinator for the skilled care facility’s east wing. Moments like this between residents and staff are among the many outcomes the Rice Care Center hopes to see as it makes the transition this year and next year into a redesigned facility.
The $6 million project is transforming not only the physical appearance of the 1960s-era nursing home but the resident experience as well. “It’s a total 180,” said Troy Barrick, Rice Care Center administrator. “It’s all for the residents.”