Story Sharing: Connecting with Residents and their Families — Toward Person-Centered Meaningful Care


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Diane Heliker, RN, PhD

The focus of this presentation is to illustrate how story, the narrative of one’s lived experiences, reveals what is most meaningful to each unique resident in long-term care communities. A sampling of research findings addressing story is offered along with the relationship-based caring practice of Story Sharing. To assist all staff and caregivers, strategies that ensure the successful gathering of stories are introduced followed by exercises demonstrating the interpretation of stories and the discovery of what is most meaningful to a resident. Once these meanings are revealed, they are incorporated into each resident’s care/life plan. Examples are offered throughout.

At the end of this presentation, attendees will be able to:

  1. Describe the significance of story as it relates to meaningful person-centered care;
  2. Describe the strategies inherent in Story Sharing and the interpretation of meaning for each resident and involve family members;
  3. Initiate customized Story Sharing practices in his/her care community;
  4. Incorporate personal meaning into each resident’s care/life plan;
  5. Incorporate Story Sharing resident experiences into Staff Performance Evaluations.