Meet and Go Beyond New CMS Regulations by Engaging Residents with Real Life (focus: Activities Critical Element Pathway)


Guide: Carmen Bowman, MHS, BSW, Owner Edu-Catering


Product Description

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

The institution has failed us by compartmentalizing parts of the persons we serve and then compartmentalizing who serves which part of the divided person. All staff need education, encouragement and permission to engage residents. Contrived group activities often fail people, they need personalized and purposeful engagement to fill their otherwise empty days. See what can happen when all team members learn the value of meaningful engagement to move from “activity programming” to meaningful engagement with real life.  Soon gone are the days of groups. Residents are telling us they don’t want them, and many can’t function in them. We need to design the use of budgeted time differently. Engagement holds promise for reducing depression, anxiety, falls and more. If Bingo is the best we can do, that is not a compliment; be inspired to compete with Bingo. Residents want meaning and purpose, to give and contribute. From serving Baby Boomers, to people living with dementia, it needs to be different.  New regulations, guidance and the new survey tool Critical Element Pathway for Activities reflect this:

  • Engagement is used in the regulations and meaningful life/choices/relationships/activities/employment more than ever before.
  • Baseline care plan with minimum healthcare information” including interests
  • “Comprehensive person-centered care plan includes resident’s goals, desired outcomes and preferences” and residents are helped to “reach the goal”
  • “Activity plan in the [home] and community” incorporating “known interests and preferences”
  • Continuation of life roles consistent with preferences and functional capacity”
  • Time-limited or low-energy” activities for those “with severely limited attention span or medically compromised”
  • “Scheduled cares such as bathing and therapy services, … don’t conflict with activities you want to go to”
  • “Equipment and supplies” to “complete activities”
  • Encourage and support the development of new interests, hobbies and skills”
  • Alternatives … if the resident refuses, resists or complains”
  • Besides resident/family, activity staff and social service, also nurse interviews ascertaining support of resident interests.

Now is the time to use the new requirements to rise above the commonplace.


  1. Participants will be able to list regulatory requirements depicted in the CEP.
  2. Participants will be able to name better culture change practices than the traditional offerings.
  3. Participants will be able to describe how culture change practices shared support compliance.