The building that once housed the Gila General Hospital on Monroe Street in Globe has a new owner—Haven Health Group—and an updated purpose. As a skilled nursing facility—no longer a “nursing home”—it’s also receiving an extensive remodel, inside and out, to help it better serve the community as a rehab facility and a home for people who need skilled nursing care.
“The baby boomer generation doesn’t want to stay in the nursing home of their parents or grandparents,” Ryan Taylor, Haven of Globe’s Executive Director, explains. So Haven is responding by remodeling the building to bring it up to date, both in appearance and function.
The remodel includes creating a new frontage for the building with a deep cabin-type overhang. There will be new outdoor spaces for residents to enjoy and practice activities of daily living (ADLs). Thirty-seven rooms are being completely remodeled, and the areas that are not being remodeled will be redecorated.
The facility is also getting a new, larger rehab gym with new equipment. “It’s going to be state of the art,” says Sid Hostetter, Haven’s Rehab Coordinator.
Hostetter, a well-respected physical therapist with 17 years in Globe, has been working with Taylor to design the new rehab space. According to Hostetter, it will include an occupational therapy kitchen where patients can practice preparing meals, and a bathroom for practicing ADLs.
Taylor added that there will also be a large outdoor therapy courtyard with different surfaces like stone, brick, and concrete, so patients and residents can practice walking and moving their wheelchairs over the different surfaces. There will even be a wooden bridge, Hostetter said. Much of the equipment is already being purchased so Hostetter and his patients can start using it even before the new gym is built.
Taylor said the baby boomer generation wants more than just remodeled spaces in a skilled nursing facility—they also expect responsiveness when they have concerns, quality of care, and quality rehab. “We’ve got a five-star rating,” Taylor said, referring to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ quality rating system, where five stars is the highest rating. “We’re the only one in Gila County,” he said. The rating system includes health inspections, staffing numbers, and quality measures.
Taylor pointed out that Debbie Martinez, Haven’s Activities Supervisor, organizes community activities for Globe-Miami seniors, such as a Halloween party and a Fourth of July party. She also creates a full calendar of activities for the residents of Haven, like Las Vegas Day and Hawaii Day. “She goes all-out,” Taylor said, adding, “Food and activities are the two biggest ways to keep our long-term residents happy. That and good nursing care.” Haven of Globe also participates in community organizations and events such as the Taliesin Studio Project and the Relay for Life last April.
What is the difference between a skilled nursing facility (SNF) and the nursing homes of the past? Hostetter explained that today’s SNFs are “more sub-acute and rehab for people that are coming out of the hospital quicker, in more of an acute condition. So the nursing staff has to be more skilled and better equipped and better trained and educated to take care of people who are sicker. The same thing with the therapists.”
Taylor said that there is a demand for quality rehab in Globe. “We’re taking higher-acuity rehab patients. Haven is more focused on that, whereas Copper Mountain was mostly focused on long-term care. But that’s not to say we’re not going to have long-term care. The percentage mix is going to be different,” he said.
Hostetter says one of his objectives as rehab coordinator will be to build rapport between the rehab professionals and the nursing and social services staff. He said this is so that the nursing, social services, and rehab staff will “feel like we’re all one and not separate.” Another of Hostetter’s objectives is to hire therapists who live in Globe. “You live here in town, you’re part of the community, and being part of the community is important to me,” he said. “Then you’re more invested in what you’re doing.”
Hostetter says he’s been doing therapy for over 20 years and still enjoys it. “Seeing people improve, giving people hope, using their skills and their personality to help people get better, seeing them progress, seeing them get to go home [when] a lot of times they’re concerned they’re not ever going to get to go home. It’s exciting,” Hostetter said.
Brooke Horta is Haven’s Medical Records Manager and also does admissions and marketing for Haven. She noted the family environment and patient orientation at Haven. “We’re more involved with our residents,” she said. Horta is one of the first people that patients and residents meet when they arrive at Haven. As a result, they often continue to turn to her when they have questions or need help. She added, “I like dealing with the families, helping them, and being able to help them through a tough time.”
Haven’s Director of Nursing, Robert Labowitz, moved here from Tucson this spring to join Haven of Globe after serving as Chief Nursing Officer at Cornerstone Hospital in Tucson. Before becoming a nurse, he was an ambulance medic. “My mentality is, the floor, the patient and the resident first, and [then] the staff, and then the office [work]. And that’s what this company truly believes, as well,” he said. “I have two corporate people here today who have helped transfer patients, who have helped take care of our guests. That’s unheard of in most corporations.”
Ryan Taylor has two small children and raises chickens at his home in Globe. He has an MBA in healthcare administration, but also has served in the Coast Guard and the Marines. He said, “One of the most fun things about being here is, you’re taking care of everyone’s family … and I think that’s one of the big cultural things with our nursing staff, our housekeeping, our dietary—they all feel like these residents are their family and so they go out of their way to take care of them, they make personal sacrifices that we don’t ask them or expect them to.”
Hostetter expressed optimism about his new role at Haven and Haven’s contribution to the community. “Sometimes rural communities get the short end of the stick … you’ve got all the competition in the Valley,” he said.
“That’s not good enough for Globe. We want Globe to have everything that people get in the Valley. The same level of care, the same equipment, the same facilities. That’s what we’re working towards.”
Autumn Giles is a freelance writer and recipe developer whose work has appeared in Edible Baja Arizona, Modern Farmer, Punch, Serious Eats, and elsewhere. Her first book, Beyond Canning was published in February 2016.