NYU Meyers receives award to develop Designation of Excellence in Person-Centered Long-Term Care

December 15, 2023

The Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing (HIGN) at NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing, a leader in advancing age-sensitive and equitable care for older adults, has received an 18-month, $375,000 award from The Mayer-Rothschild Foundation to enhance person-centered care in long-term care settings through the development of a designation of excellence. 

Person-centered care is quality care that embraces the unique experiences each individual brings to a situation. Grounded in the values of respect, integrity, and dignity, it recognizes the individuality of one's preferences, values, and needs and provides an environment that encourages individual decision-making. 

“While person-centered care has not historically been the norm in nursing homes and other long-term care settings, there is a critical opportunity to move toward practices that honor residents’ preferences, foster communication between residents and staff, and empower older adults, while moving away from top-down, task-driven practices,” said Tara Cortes, PhD, RN, FAAN, executive director of HIGN, clinical professor at NYU Meyers, and principal investigator on the project. 

“Person-centered care allows individuals to choose their own goals and determine how to achieve those goals. It is built on the values of dignity and respect for each individual,” said Joseph Ouslander, MD, professor of geriatric medicine at Florida Atlantic University and a collaborator on the project. 

The Mayer-Rothschild Foundation Designation of Excellence in Person-Centered Long-Term Care initiative will develop the processes, tools, and standards to guide and evaluate nursing homes, assisted living communities, and dementia and memory care residences in their journey for the designation of excellence in person-centered care. This outcomes-driven credential will be rooted in a strong evidence-based foundation developed through a rigorous research and evaluation methodology completed by the HIGN team at NYU Meyers with this funding.

HIGN will partner with five long-term care communities across the country—Beatitudes Campus in Arizona, Bethel New Life in Illinois, Garden Spot Communities in Pennsylvania, the New Jewish Home in New York, and Sequoia Senior Living in California—to validate the tools, standards, and measures and pilot the initiative. These five organizations will become the first long-term care communities to receive the designation of excellence

The Mayer-Rothschild Foundation, an operating foundation located in Chicago, Illinois, is the only philanthropic organization in the United States dedicated to promoting person-centered care in long-term, residential communities serving older adults. This award recognizes and honors the paradigm-shifting accomplishments of Robert Nathan Mayer, PhD, and his unique contributions to improving the built environment and developing best practices in person-centered care through policy change. The goal is to offer a blueprint for all organizations offering residential care, honoring Mayer’s vision of the critical importance of “listening to the voice of those receiving care.”