Heritage Program for Seniors
The VCHS Heritage Program for Seniors is a behavioral health program that provides individualized treatment for older adults who struggle with emotional or behavioral issues. Our philosophy is to provide quality care that stresses the importance of dignity, respect, confidentiality and helping the individual to achieve an optimal level of functioning.
The Heritage Program is an outpatient program that provides intensive treatment Monday through Friday at Valley County Health System. Patients receive services in the least restrictive environment and are able to return to their homes by early afternoon.
Problems and Needs of the Elderly
The elderly and their caregivers have unique problems and needs. Physical decline, loss of independence and safety concerns are just a few of the concerns that require special attention and can contribute to depression and other mental health issues for the elderly. Healthcare professionals have identified that emotional problems decrease the ability to cope with the natural aging process.
Mental Health Disorders affect at least 20% of individuals aged 55 and older.
Depression and other disorders are often undiagnosed and untreated in older patients, due in part to the presence of other complicating medical complaints.
The risk for depression in the elderly is 4x greater than for the general population.
- Group, family and individual therapy
- Communication skills
- Conflict-resolution skills
- Stress management
- Assertiveness training
- Coping skills
- Positive-living skills
- Medication management
- Health and wellness training
- Grief and loss resolution
The Heritage Program's treatment modalities are designed to meet the unique needs of older adults by education of patients, families and caregivers regarding mental health issues affecting daily living. Treatment is supervised by a Board Certified Geriatric Psychiatrist and provided by a team that includes Master Level clinicians. Most importantly, each member of the Heritage team is caring, compassionate and professional while maintaining the patient's confidentiality.
Who Could Benefit From the Heritage Program?
The person whose quality of life has been diminished by physical or emotional stressors.
The person who has not progressed or benefited sufficiently in less intensive treatment settings.
The person whose mental health is declining and might require inpatient care unless treatment is provided.
Signs and Symptoms of Mental Distress in the Elderly
- Low self-esteem
- Combative behavior
- Confused thoughts
- Suicidal thoughts
- Change in eating and/or sleeping patterns
- Failing memory
- Social isolation
- Paranoia, hallucinations or delusions
- Unresolved grief issues
Any concerned individual may refer themselves or someone else to the program. The Heritage Program provides an initial clinical assessment at no cost to determine the need for further evaluation.
Transportation to and from the program may be arranged by order of a physician. Our Heritage Program van is equipped with a wheelchair lift and can service the area within a 30 to 35-mile radius of the program location.
Medicare and most private insurance plans cover Heritage Program services.
For more information, please view the Heritage Program Brochure or call 308.728.4340.
Gold Star Award
Melissa shows each patient compassion and genuine concern. Melissa takes the time with each patient to explain the procedure they are going to have and comforts them from beginning to end, explaining everything step by step. Melissa wraps warm blankets around patients when they are cold, she visits with them while they are having their procedures. Melissa gives them comfort with her caring voice and manner. Melissa connects with the patient by looking into their eyes and reassuring them about the procedure they will be having. Melissa takes the time to ensure the patients' trust, she shows each patient the utmost respect. Melissa takes on the ownership by always putting the patient's needs first. She completes each task given everyday to the best of her ability and with the highest integrity. Melissa always gives a helping hand to all associates in her department and throughout the facility. She always greets patients and associates with the sweetest smile, making everyone feel welcome!
Thank you for always going above and beyond.