Methodist Village expansion to continue with fall campaign goal of $15 million

by Tina Alvey Dale ([email protected]) 809 views 

In an effort to meet all the needs of its residents, Methodist Village Senior Living has added to its repertoire of services offered. In April, the facility, which has been in Fort Smith since 1961, opened an assisted living and Alzheimer’s special care unit. The facility, which cost $8 million to build and equip, is already at resident capacity, said Melissa Curry, CEO.

About two weeks ago, the facility began offering outpatient therapy in the rehab room of the assisted living center.

“The kick-off of the new service, along with the recent addition of the Multi-treatment Center, continues to enhance the ability to care for residents and offer the community a leading-edge facility for all facets of care,” a press release said.

Outpatient rehab includes physical, occupational and speech therapy, Curry said. Therapists design an individualized treatment plan to help patients achieve their goal.

“Highly qualified physical, occupational and speech therapy staff members are ready to help you using the latest techniques and modalities,” which include electrical stimulation, ultrasound, iontophoresis, phonophoresis, manual therapy, neuromuscular re-education, balance and gait training, specialty taping techniques and progressive resistance exercises,” a brochure for the service said.

The outpatient rehab is accepting referrals from all area physicians for preventative and rehabilitative outpatient services.

“As they (people) get older, they have falls. They need that physical and occupational therapy, speech therapy,” Curry said.

IBIS (industry and market research) reports shows $36 billion will be spent on rehabilitation services in 2019. That has gone up 3.5% in the recent years, Curry said, noting the decision to offer outpatient services was based on that research as well as need seen in their facilities.

“We have seen that residents who have a need who receive (rehab) treatment, that their depression goes down. Their pain goes down. We want to keep them independent as long as possible,” Curry said. “We want residents to feel they are not in a home. Years ago, people thought a nursing home is where they go to die. We want people to think of it as a place where they can begin to live.”

Methodist Village will kick off its “Legacy of Faith – Vision for the Future Campaign” in the fall to fund a $15 million project that will include a new facility that will house a state-of-the-art inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation facility. With the new rehab center, staffing will increase by about 25 more certified nursing assistants, licensed practical nurses and registered nurses. Methodist Village has 220 employees, Curry said.

The rehab center will be built on the site of two of the facility’s independent living cottages. The remaining three will stay on the campus, with 26 apartments.

“We will not be displacing anyone,” Curry said, noting only two apartments in the cottages that will demolished for the building project are occupied. “(Those residents) will be moved into the other buildings.”

Other projects in the upcoming capital campaign project will include remodeling the long-term care facility, the independent living cottages and the administrative building. Funding will come from donors and grants, Curry said.

“Fort Smith is such a giving community, but we have residents from outside the river valley who have shown an interest in giving to this project. They know it is so important to have a place where seniors can feel safe and secure and where they have quality care. Methodist has always shown that and that’s what we want to continue to do,” Curry said.

With the opening of the new assisted living and Alzheimer’s care unit earlier this year, Methodist Village also opened a multi-treatment center. That center was designed to accommodate multiple local providers. The multi-treatment center offers residents a general practitioner (Dr. Patricio Montiel, Mercy), dentist (Dr. Philip Morton), optometrist (Dr. Kimberely Brunk/Dr. Maygen Wilson), and podiatrist (Dr. Gina Morgan), the news release said. The center allows patients the convenience of receiving their medical care on campus.

“They still have a choice,” Curry said. “We want them to know they always have a choice (of where they go to receive their care.) This is just a convenience for them.”

That center include a $20,000 chair, provided through a grant from the Degen Foundation that can fold out into an exam table and elevate for a dentist chair, making it adaptable for a general physician, podiatrist, optometrist or dentist, Curry said. The various practitioners and services are rotated throughout the week.

The center, which can be accessed by residents through the facility, also has a waiting area for patients coming from outside Methodist Village because Methodist Village staff members and their immediate family as well as residents’ family members can use the multi-treatment center for services.