Fully integrated health and wellness system provides range of services.
When it comes to vibrant, maintenance-free senior living, Cedar Crest, an Erickson Living-managed community in Pompton Plains, New Jersey, has it all. The scenic 130-acre campus features lovely apartment homes and state-of-the-art amenities: a fitness center, year-round pool, gardens, walking paths, and hobby and creative arts studios.
Put exceptional on-campus health care on that list.
The Erickson Health Management Group (EHMG) is a fully integrated health and wellness system that provides a range of medical services to residents at the on-site medical center, rehab facilities, and pharmacy. The medical staff is comprised of Board-certified physicians, nurses, physical, occupational, and speech therapy professionals, and social workers, all of whom specialize in geriatric medicine.
Residents not only have doctors experienced in the nuances of senior health, they benefit from daily engagement with fitness instructors, nutritionists, chefs, medical specialists, and dozens of other experts working to help them live a healthy lifestyle.
This integrated, team-based approach also features the latest tools and technologies, like a proprietary patient portal with convenient access to electronic medical records, and telehealth options. The combination of expertise and access enables Cedar Crest to provide the highest quality, personalized care to residents.
"Residents and their families find great value and peace of mind knowing that our full-time doctors, who are among the best in the retirement health care industry, are on site and available whenever needed," notes Erickson Living's Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Matt Narrett. "Our integrated approach is unmatched in the senior living industry."
"Good geriatric care starts with active listening," says Cedar Crest's Medical Director, Dr. Peter Orlic, a Board-certified Internist who joined Cedar Crest since 2015. "We spend a lot of time with our patients and get to know them well."
The staff treats the entire person, not just physical symptoms. "We look at all the factors that affect your health and well-being," notes Dr. Orlic. "Are you eating well, exercising, interacting with others? Do you need to learn new ways of doing things that will make your life easier? Our team can address all of these issues to help residents live their best lives."
Appointment times far exceed the national average of just 12 minutes: Initial visits last 60 minutes, and follow-ups and regular visits last 30 minutes. When residents can't come to the medical center, the staff provides in-home visits, tele-visits, and phone consultations. More than 25 percent of visits are same-day, well above the national average. "We build our schedule so we have appointments available when they're needed," says Dr. Orlic. "You don't want to hear, 'We can see you in two weeks' when you don't feel well."
After hours, 99.5 percent of calls are answered within 10 minutes. All Security personnel, who are on campus 24/7, are trained EMTs, so medical emergencies can be handled quickly.
Because of those fast responses and longer, more comprehensive visits, 90 percent of Cedar Crest's residents use the medical center for primary care. "This is not like many private practices, where you're on your own after your visit. Here, you have an entire team supporting you, including staff from other departments," says Dr. Orlic.
Resident Sue Hawes, who holds a Ph.D. in education and is a trained psychotherapist, chairs the resident Health Services Committee. She agrees that the quality and accessibility of care at Cedar Crest are incomparable. "Everyone in the practice makes residents feel important. The doctors are very sensitive to residents' needs, and the availability of same-day appointments is remarkable. Off campus you'd wait a week or longer to be seen – not so here. If you don't have a car, or have mobility issues, it's so convenient to be seen on campus."
That kind of personal attention extends to every department at Cedar Crest. The staff know the residents well; if they see something amiss, they alert the medical center immediately.
This year, more than ever, it's important to get the annual flu vaccine. The medical team is being proactive, going door-to-door to offer residents a flu shot. "We started in mid-September and should see all residents in about two weeks," says Dr. Orlic. "We do what it takes to protect everyone on campus."
Given the quality and scope of care, the focus on seniors, and emphasis on wellness, it's no wonder that 85 percent of Erickson Living residents, across 20 campuses, use the Erickson Health Medical Group. The system is consistently rated among the highest quality when compared to other senior communities and stand-alone care, giving residents the access and peace of mind they need to live healthier lives.
To learn more about Cedar Crest, visit cedarcrestcommunity.com.
About Cedar Crest: Cedar Crest, one of 20 continuing care retirement communities developed and managed by Erickson Living®, is situated on a scenic 130-acre campus in Pompton Plains, New Jersey. The not-for-profit community of more than 1,800 residents and 1,000 employees is governed by its own board of directors, affiliated with National Senior Campuses, who provide independent financial and operational oversight of the community. Additional information about Cedar Crest can be found at CedarCrestCommunity.com.
Photo: Cedar Crest's on-site medical center staff provide televisits as well as in-person, in-home, and phone consultations.
Written by Dorrie Anshel