health care workers truly know people and their life stories. The brief social history or even the new MDS 3.0 standards are okay, but these things are the bare minimum. The life story will need to be captured and it can happen in a variety of ways by learning more from the people themselves or by a process of involving their family members in the interview or by motivating staff to engage in a much more personal way.

Also, too often family could and would tell health care workers more information, but health care workers aren't asking the family to provide this.  It's the details that count and there is a lot of information that can be gathered over time. What makes this person really tick? What are their personal comforts? What relationships were important to them? What really matters? What will help us truly connect?  I know its overwhelming with the level of detail needed on the health care and physical needs side of things.....but emotional and spiritual and social needs must come FIRST.

Want help? We've implemented our approach in a variety of heatlh care and hospital settings across the U.S. and Canada so far. Call LifeBio at 1-866-543-3246 or