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Past Releases - 2016
February 26, 2018 - St. Camillus Gives Dementia Patients a Piece of Home in New Building - MADELINE ZUKOWSKI, CATHOLIC HERALD STAFF
Although moving out of home and into a living facility can be hard for seniors, St. Camillus’ new memory care building has an environmental design that makes it feel like the next best
In late January, St. Camillus celebrated the completion of its new North and Jesuit Residences. The North Residence includes 72 units for dementia patients who need assisted living services, while the Jesuit Residence features 50 units for aging Society of Jesus members. The new
building, built on previously vacant land owned by the Camillians, broke ground in April.
The North Residence’s units have several qualities that make it feel homey, while also tending to dementia patients’ needs. The 72 units are split into three 24-unit neighborhoods, each
designed in a circle, or a racetrack format. This format allows residents to stay active, but stay within the neighborhood and eventually loop back to their unit.
“A lot of times, they really like to walk; they really like to go somewhere,” said Kevin Schwab, the CEO of St. Camillus. “It gives them the ability to go somewhere without harming themselves.”
Residents will be able recognize their unit by the shape and the color above their door. A particular unit’s soffit is different from the next, said Schwab, and even other areas of the building are marked with different colors.
“If you look at the building design, outside the race track, you have very significant color areas, which helps them recognize certain things, like where their room is, where the dining and living areas are,” Schwab said. “The visual cues help reduce the anxiety that comes with not
being in a familiar place. It brings that anxiety level down, which eliminates that behavior of wanting to go home or wanting to go to work or wherever they’re thinking they want to go. Really, it’s for their safety.”
Apart from different colors, another visual cue can come from a resident’s memory box, located on one side of the unit’s door. This memory box, which looks like a medicine cabinet, is for family members of residents and residents to fill with items that are familiar to the
resident or may spark his or her memory.
The three 24-unit neighborhoods are named after Milwaukee parks: Lake Park Square, Cathedral Square and Whitnall Park Square. An interdisciplinary team of social workers, nursing staff and activities staff at St. Camillus brainstormed the idea to name each neighborhood after a park, and the idea evolved once they partnered with Wauwatosa artist
Kathleen Pulz. She researched each park and created artwork, including iconic pieces in those parks.
“The best choice was the park system for fond memories,” said Schwab. “Many of our residents experienced those parks over their lifetime.” St. Camillus plans to duplicate that idea
in assisted living neighborhoods, by naming each one after a Wauwatosa park, he added.
Several other aspects of the new building have special touches. There are two courtyards attached to the building for the three neighborhoods, so residents can enjoy the nice weather
while remaining in a contained area. In addition, the building has two chapels, one for the North Residence and one for the Jesuit Residence. Residents started moving into the new
North Residence units Feb. 12.
Located north of Bluemound Road and south of Wisconsin Avenue in Wauwatosa, St. Camillus has served southeastern Wisconsin for almost 90 years, offering residents a life plan community. It offers independent living, assisted living, memory care, skilled nursing, rehabilitation, home healthcare, home hospice and care management services.
Since most of its buildings, built decades ago, are now outdated and aren’t marketable, St. Camillus is undergoing a few phases of expansion. The building of the North and Jesuit
Residences is considered its first phase of expansion, and next it plans to expand and update its independent living services.
“We want to be able to continue the Camillian tradition and mission on this property,” Schwab said. “Being here for 90 years, the Camillians want to thrive here and to do that, we need
to make certain adjustments as the marketplace dictates.”
To learn more about St. Camillus and its expansion plans, call 414-259-6310.
Past Releases - 2017
January 1, 2018 -
Join us for the Laurie Strothenke Celebration of Life Fundraiser.
Friday, January 19th, 2018 - Lunch 11:30am - 1:00pm, Dinner 4:30 - 8:00pm
San Camillo - 10200 W. Blue Mound Rd., Wauwatosa, WI 53226
Tickets are $10, Age 10 or under $5. Includes spaghetti dinner, beverage and dessert. Cash or Check only.
For additional questions, please contact Lindsey at 414.259.4610