A case study of our collaboration with
the Struthers Parkinson’s Center

Our continuing relationship with Struthers offers a wonderful opportunity to develop a unique residence and program that addresses the overall wellness and quality of life for each resident. In addition our ongoing Parkinsons specific education program is what truly sets us apart from other residential assisted living providers.

Our education and training curriculum includes but is not limited to the following:

  1. Home Health Aide Core training program
  2. TULIPS testing (Time Understanding Quality of Life, Increased Awareness, Pills on Time, Support)
  3. Continuing Nurses training on a monthly basis
  4. Quarterly Home Health Aide CEU training specific to Parkinson’s and movement disorders
  5. Home Health Aide Competency training
  6. Ongoing nursing annual training specific to Parkinson’s and movement disorders

To achieve the required balance as indicted in the following case study, we utilize the nationally renowned C.R.E.A.T.E Program at the Struthers Parkinson’s Center for many residents in our Parkinson’s Specialty Care homes.


To create a seamless, comprehensive model of care for individuals with Parkinson’s Disease (PD) who reside in an assisted living facility.


When planning a move, Parkinson’s Disease (PD) clients and their family members often seek facilities that have a good understanding of Parkinson’s Disease. Our experience has been that some Health Care providers in assisted living facilities are often times unfamiliar with PD’s unique symptoms or challenges.

The Struthers Parkinson’s Center, a National Parkinson Foundation Center of Excellence, completed a one year pilot program offering education and support to assisted living facilities in the Minneapolis/St. Paul regional area.

Parkinson’s Specialty Care (PSC) Assisted Living Facilities, recognized an unfilled market niche for specialized PD residential services, therefore they purchased several homes in the residential neighborhoods of Edina, Golden Valley, West Bloomington and Maplewood.Together, we have created a collaborative model of care between these organizations.

Method I:
Initial Planning Involving Both Organizations (Prior to opening ECR, GVR & WBR)

  1. Development of staff orientation programs
  2. Environmental modifications at all facilities
  3. Create resident assessment tools
  4. Design a medication distribution system
  5. Complete eight hours of PD-specific staff training with an emphasis on timely medications, understanding on/off fluctuations, coping with freezing speech, cognitive changes and maximized quality of life.

Method II:
Ongoing Collaboration Between Struthers Parkinson’s Center (SPC) and PSC

  1. SPC Staff provides medical care, rehabilitation therapies and social services to all PSC residents.
  2. SPC continues to provide eight hours of PD specific training to all new PSC staff
  3. SPC provides regular PSC staff in-services for continued learning
  4. PSC residents attend SPC’s therapeutic day program to participate in specialized activity programs.
  5. Monthly care planning rounds are held with PSC and SPC staff
  6. Joint family care conferences for PSC residents enhance communication and involvement in our client’s personal care.


At the opening of ECR, only 50% of the 8 bed facility housed residents with Parkinson’s Disease. Within 18 months of opening, ECR achieved its goal of becoming a 100% PD facility.

Three years after opening, ECR purchased additional living space and doubled its occupancy; currently serving 15 long-term and short-term respite stay clients with Parkinson’s Disease. Residents and families report a high satisfaction rate and enjoy the seamless continuum of care between medical, residential and support services.

In Conclusion

It is possible to create a successful model of assisted living focused on the specialized needs of people with Parkinson’s Disease. Collaborative services between medical, residential and support programs provide opportunities for improving staff education, patient care, and ongoing communication.


We have a long-term collaboration with the Struthers Parkinson’s Center, a National Center of Excellence. We utilize its nationally renowned C.R.E.A.T.E. program for some of our Residential Living residents.

In addition, our residential and home care services are dedicated members of the Struthers Parkinson’s Center highly regarded CareNetwork.