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Louisiana Enhancing Aging with Dignity Through Empowerment and Respect

Contact Information
Barbara Anthony

Began informally in 2004 after DHH- Health Standards and the State Long Term Ombudsman co-sponsored a conference at three locations across the state. Originally the group consisted of a small group of individuals representing Health Standards, State LTC Ombudsman, Quality Improvement Organization (QIO), and several representatives from for profit and not for profit nursing homes across the state. Unfortunately, the coalition lost momentum with Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. However, this past year it established formally as a coalition.

Organizational Structure

  • L.E.A.D.E.R.'s application for 501(c)3 status was approved 2/21/2009;
  • Voluntary Board of Directors consisting of a President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer;
  • Committees: membership, educational, & public relations/publicity;
  • Open membership with a small fee – resident, individual, & corporate/entity;
  • Current Organizations: AARP, Alzheimer's Association, Department of Health and Hospitals,
    Louisiana State University - School of Social Work, Quality Improvement Organization (QIO)
    State LTC Ombudsman, University of LA Monroe - Institute of Gerontology. 

Currently donations, dues, & educational conference revenue.

Major Activities This Year

  • Hosted the Second Annual LEADER Culture Change Summit:  Soaring to New Heights with Person-Centered Care.  More than 425 long-term care professionals, ombudsmen, surveyors and policymakers gathered from across the state for two days of networking and information sharing by various national and state speakers.   Summit attendees were welcomed by the Louisiana Secretary of Health and Hospitals, Bruce Greenstein.   Special guest speakers included David Farrell, Carmen Bowman, Joanne Rader and Margaret Calkins.  In conjunction with the Summit, a special consumer workshop session informed consumers about person-centered care and the philosophy of culture change.
  • Formalized plan for the development of regional LEADER chapters resulting in two formally recognized chapters (Shreveport and Lake Charles) in the state.   Three additional regions (Baton Rouge, Alexandria and Lafayette) began the initial process of formal chapter organization.  Regional chapters meet at least quarterly, providing networking opportunities and educational sessions to LEADER members and other interested stakeholders.
  • Participated in Phase II of the Pioneer Network's "Creating Home: Advocating for Change in How and Where We Age" consumer education initiative funded by the Picker Institute.  As part of the project, LEADER volunteers conducted 17 consumer information sessions across the state of Louisiana.  The goals of the project were to educate consumers about long-term care and culture change, to learn the best ways to educate consumers, and to get consumers involved in the culture change movement.
  • Hosted group viewings of the Pioneer Network's national learning collaborative webinar series on "Using the MDS 3.0 as an Engine for High Quality Individualized Care."  Group viewings of the three-part series were held in seven regional locations across the state for a total of 21 viewings.  The viewings were attended by more than 150 nursing home professionals and ombudsmen.  Attendees participated in group discussions after each viewing.
  • Continued to participate in a workgroup project led by the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals to revise the Louisiana Minimum Licensure requirements for nursing homes.  Revisions include the elimination of language within the requirements that could be perceived as an obstacle to implementing culture change and person-centered care.  
  • Partnered with Louisiana's Quality Improvement Organization (QIO) as co-convener of Louisiana's Local Area Network of Excellence (LANE) in support of the Advancing Excellence in America's Nursing Homes Campaign.  
  • LEADER board members were personally invited to meet with the Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH), Bruce Greenstein, to provide information about LEADER and its mission with the Secretary and his staff.   Advancing Excellence information was shared with the Secretary.  As a result of the meeting, the Secretary created a stakeholder workgroup to assist DHH in the development of quality improvement process initiatives that will better Louisiana nursing homes.    The stakeholder group will begin meeting in 2012.
  • Invited to present on the topic of culture change and person-centered care at various organizational/educational meetings throughout the state.    Invitations included presentations at the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals Bi-Annual Surveyor Conference and the eQHealth Solution's 2011 Medicare Quality Summit & Awards.
  • Published 3 issues of the LEADER Newsletter featuring news, information and member stories about the culture change journey.  The LEADER Newsletter is distributed by mail to all Louisiana nursing homes and to more than 1,700 individuals via LEADER's e-mail list.  The newsletter also is available on the LEADER website at .
  • Introduced the LEADER blog, LA Talking, and created official LEADER social networking sites on Facebook, Twitter and You Tube.  The LEADER blog will be utilized to journal future LEADER projects and activities and provide long-term stakeholders a forum for culture change dialogue.  As of the end of the year the LEADER Facebook page had received almost 200 "likes" from individuals interested in the mission and activities of LEADER.
  • Conducted a survey of LEADER members and other nursing home professionals in the state to help gauge the impact of LEADER's educational and outreach activities.  Participants were surveyed about their involvement in LEADER, the use of LEADER resources, organizational changes resulting from LEADER educational programs, perceived barriers to culture change and suggested future projects for LEADER.  The online survey was completed by 120 interdisciplinary team members.  More than 65 percent of respondents indicated they had implemented changes as result of resources provided by LEADER.
  • Received recognition from Governor Bobby Jindal who formally proclaimed March 14 – 15, 2011 "Culture Change Awareness" days to coincide with the LEADER annual summit.   This was the second year that the Governor recognized the LEADER Summit dates in Louisiana as "Culture Change Awareness" days.
  • Received a $35,000 civil money penalty (CMP) grant from the Louisiana Department of Health Hospitals to support the Second Annual LEADER Culture Change Summit.  CMPs paid into the Nursing Home Residents' Trust Fund may only be used to support activities that benefit nursing home residents.  Use of CMP funds awarded by the state for projects must be approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.  LEADER received its first grant for $25,000 from the state in 2010.
  • Convened two LEADER strategic planning retreats for the LEADER board of directors in addition to the quarterly board meetings.   Board actions from the retreat expanded the LEADER board of directors to include representation from each LEADER regional chapter, broadened the LEADER mission statement, and adopted three-year strategic goals for the organization.