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The Importance of Communication Logs

By Heather Brown
August 26, 2016

Communication is the foundation of a solid and meaningful relationship. Assisted living facility providers and administrators hold a significant communication responsibility. You care for residents on a daily basis. Many times, those residents have family members that check in on them and their care regularly. Communicating with family members is vital to building relationships and trust. You get the privilege of helping residents daily, but their family has the final say in crucial decisions. One way to effectively communicate is utilizing a communication log.

What is it?

A communication log is a place to document important details of a resident’s care and the action taken. Important scenarios to document include:

  • Falls
  • Wandering
  • Change in behavior
  • Accident
  • Injury
  • Complaints

Include a description with the date, time, and details of the incident. Stick to the facts to avoid blurry lines and opinions on who is at fault. Along with documenting these incidents, include the steps taken to care for and manage the occurrence:

  • Call to the doctor
  • Call to the family
  • Call for an ambulance
  • Taken to the hospital
  • Call to licensing department to report complaints

Describe in detail conversations. Include any steps or changes needed to properly manage, care for, and rectify the incident.

Why is it important?

Documentation is your safeguard when incidents occur. Families are quick to call on attorneys for help when they think their loved ones are mistreated or receive poor care. Proactive communication builds trust and shows family members you actively care for residents. Communication logs are a great method to document these conversations and they are important for multiple reasons.

  • Provide a place to document the details of an occurrence.
  • Provide a place to show active measures taken to care for the resident.
  • Provide a place to outline steps to implement to maintain care and safety for the resident.
  • Hold you accountable to contact the resident’s family and keep them updated on occurrences.

Effective communication is the key to providing quality care to your residents. Build an effective communication plan by implementing a communication log in your assisted living facility. Your facility benefits with improved relationships and trust between providers, residents, and family members.

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