Nursing home using tablets to connect

Altoona, Blair County, Pa. - Richard Gildea can now talk to any of his grandchildren face to face with just a swipe of a finger.

Garvey Manor Nursing Home in Altoona is using iPads as a way for family members to connect, even when they're hours away.

Caleb Gildea lives in Virginia now and can't visit as often as he'd like. 

"Having the chance to use this technology even though I'm at work in the middle of the day it just means so much to me..I know a lot of my family members have used it too and it means so much to them," explained Caleb. 

Activities Director Barbra Hileman says family can also make special video messages.

"Making the little personalized videos on the iPad and being able to take it to the resident just to offer reassurance that person centered care really makes a huge difference."

Tammy Snowberger's grandmother Ruth has a hard time remembering the last time she visited, so she made a video staff can play to say hi.

"This is really nice that you can bring this in and she can get a little message and know, you know what that she's not alone and we're thinking about her all the time and she's in our hearts," said Snowberger. 

Caleb says it's an initiative more should try. 

"I just hope that other nursing homes might do something similar for other residents and families in those situations. I just would like to see this happening more across the Central PA regional a little more."

UPMC Health Plan donated 3 iPads to the nursing home. 
 


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