Horton House Update
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Issue #4 13th May, 2015

Driving past Horton House at Gordon will be a surprise for many people as the old buildings are rapidly demolished. Some of the old buildings are making way for our new development that includes underground parking, additional beds, new en-suites for every room and better spaces for residents and staff.

The wild weather in Sydney this last week has delayed our progress a little, but we are rapidly moving ahead with finalizing the documentation for all the services in the building.

At this time we are scheduled to finish the building works in June 2016.

John Stuart
Chief Executive Officer

I recently had the opportunity to meet with residents and staff to talk about the new Horton House. We are very interested in what people liked about the old Horton House, what they didn't like and what we should consider in the rebuild. Thank you to everyone who contributed. The feedback and how we are addressing the issues is outlined below.

Anna Maria Nagy, Manager, Planning

Resident Feedback...
Gardens and Grounds
Residents liked the gardens and grounds and appreciated the opportunity to sit outside. They also liked being able to go outside to the garden without assistance. A bird bath in the new gardens was requested.
What we are doing:
A new garden is being built along the south of the site along the Pacific Highway. This will be a paved area with a pergola and seating. There will be a water feature as part of the design. In addition, a new raised walk way through the gardens on the west of the site along Ravenswood Avenue will link to the courtyard. Level access to the garden will be through a new lounge area on the ground floor. There will also be a new courtyard in the centre of the building.

Bedrooms and Bathrooms

Feedback showed conclusively that residents would prefer the privacy of their own bathroom. They would also like doors that offer better noise and light protection. There was a variety of opinion on the best location for televisions, and some people have requested the light come on automatically when entering the bathroom. Shelving for books and plants was also a high priority for residents.
What we are doing:
All bedrooms will have en-suite bathrooms for the sole use of the resident in that room. New wardrobes will be installed with ample storage and a safe drawer for valuables. Movement sensors in the rooms will activate lights and in some cases alert the staff through the nurse call system.

Living Areas
There are four (4) sitting areas that will provide residents with a variety of choices for recreation throughout the day. The sitting room next to the dining area will have an open fireplace and be a snug place to be in winter months. The southern lounge on the ground floor will have a beautiful outlook and access to the courtyard. The lounge above (on the first floor) will have the same outlook but might be a place for relaxation with a book and contemplation of the garden areas from above. Located in the middle of the buildings on the first floor, the last lounge area will have a library of reading materials.

Clockwise from top left

Ground Floor Main Lounge, Ground Floor West lounge, First Floor West Lounge, First Floor Mid Lounge.

Visitor parking and pickups

There will be underground parking with lift access to all floors in the Home. The new arrangements will enable residents going out with friends or relations to comfortably get to vehicles. There will be security access from the main entrance, car park and lifts, to protect residents and staff from unauthorized access.

Staff Feedback...

Bedrooms and Bathrooms

Features that staff would like to see in the bedrooms and bathrooms are: well positioned power outlets raised from the floor to enable placement of beds against the walls. Unfortunately, the suggestion about sliding doors to residents' rooms cannot be taken up because we have to have special fire doors to the bedrooms and these have to swing closed. Positioning of the nurse call points in bedrooms and bathrooms was also important for both staff and residents. The team also thought that sensor operated toilets would be good.
What we are doing:
All power outlets will be positioned to allow for ease of access and the positioning of furniture in the bedrooms. All beds will be electric models that will raise and lower the height of the bed so that bedspreads don't drag on the floor, are easy to access and make it easier to make the bed. Each bathroom will have a nurse call point next to the toilet and a pull cord in the shower. We will be making a decision on the nurse call system very soon. We are also looking at an integrated toilet and bidet with auto flushing capability. These toilets provide a greater level of personal hygiene. The doors to the ensuite bathrooms will be sliding. In addition, all bedroom doors will be connected to our access control system and entry will be by swipe card, pendant or other device that residents and staff will carry.


Bedrooms clockwise from top left: Classic Bedrooms with out-board bathrooms, Premium rooms with in-board bathrooms, Classic Bedrooms with internal bathrooms

Working Areas

The team at Horton House thought that in spite of its age, there were many good points about the old building. They liked the outlook from the staff room and staff office with natural light. They though the treatment room and medication room were too small. A separate office for admin and carer staff was requested as was a training room. Enough space for storage of walkers at meal times and other equipment is important too. At least two lifts was the resounding message that we got from staff about work areas. We also got comments about the nurse call system and sensor operated taps in hand wash areas.

What we are doing:
There will be a separate office for the Admin assistant. The clinical staff will have two spaces; a treatment room plus a staff write up room. There is a consulting room for GPs and Allied Health visitors. A staff rest room with bathroom and a staff training room are all provided in the new building. We will have hand wash stations around the Facility. Two lifts, spanning three floors, are planned for the building.  Access to the basement, car parking and laundry will be access-controlled via our swipe card system. Our plan at this stage is to have sensor controlled taps in all resident ensuites, public bathrooms and  hand wash stations. Annunciators which locate signals for the nurse call system will be located strategically throughout the building. More information is provided below on the nurse call system.

Hotel Services

There were lots of suggestions from staff including selection of flooring that is easily cleaned and non-slip, door and wall protection to prevent damage from walkers wheelchairs and trolleys was desirable, sensor lights in various areas were highly rated as was the availability of a utility room and a room for cleaners.

What we are doing:
All floors will be carpeted. We have found that vinyl flooring  can be a real hazard where falls are concerned. Water or urine often pools on the floor and becomes slippery. There will be some paneling on the walls to make them more robust against damage. Many of the lights will be sensor operated as part of our energy management. There will be a cleaners' room on each floor, and a utility room on each floor. Our main linen store will be next to the laundry.  However, we will use an impress system with linen trolleys on each floor.

Nurse Call System

We will be installing a state of the art nurse call system. Call points will be located next to each resident bed and toilet with a pull cord in the shower. Also beside the bed will be a call pendant making it easy for residents to use whilst in bed. All rooms will be fully dementia fitted with movement sensors to switch on lights, alert staff to residents getting out of bed, and door exit sensors to let staff know if someone leaves their room at night. In addition, residents will have the option of wearing a small call button to use when they are out of their room, and this button will also alert staff about resident whereabouts within the Facility.  We are also looking at sensors in the floor to help alert staff to any resident who may have "wandering behavior" and will also alert staff of any fall in the bedroom.

Annunciators will be located throughout the home and nurse call messages will be transmitted to our telephone system.

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Our mailing address is:
Twilight Aged Care
PO Box 193

NSW 2067

(02) 9414 4400

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