Marc Masternick, interim administrator for O’Brien Memorial Health Care Center, calls perfect scores in the Ohio Department of Health’s annual inspection “like a unicorn.”
However, O’Brien, which is owned by Windsor House Inc. of Girard, has seen unicorns in 2007, 2012 and 2017. That consistency is no accident, Masternick said.
“A perfect score really validates all the hard work and care that happened in this facility,” said Masternick, who also is civic affairs coordinator for Windsor House.
The 99-bed home, which opened in 1981, provides skilled nursing care – round the clock care for people who can’t care for themselves — hospice and respite care, long- and short-term rehabilitation and residential therapy. It has consistently been rated a five-star nursing home by Medicare.
O’Brien officials stress the importance of every job, whether it’s the director of nursing or a housekeeper, he said.
“We try to get them to see the big picture and how what they’re doing affects the people who live in the facility,” Masternick said.
Not scoring well can bring sanctions, financial and otherwise, based on the severity of the deficiency, making the sometimes week-long inspection process – all inspections are unannounced – stressful, Masternick said.
The inspections cover all aspects of the operation, including the buildings, financial concerns, cleanliness, food prep and water quality.
“It’s like our Super Bowl,” Masternick said. “It takes a lot of hard work and a lot of time. It’s hard to get there but it’s easy to fail.”
Residents deserve nothing less than the best the company can provide, he said.
“We’re taking care of one of the greatest generations in the world,” Masternick said. “The selflessness, the hard work – that generation, they worked four jobs if they needed to. It was family, country and God to them.”
Administrators try to motivate staff to live up to perfect-score standard by being accessible and approachable, and following the Golden Rule, he said.
“It’s how you treat people,” he said.”Nobody’s more important that the next person.”
The staff apparently likes the challenge as employees tend to stay. One-third of employees have been there for 10 years of longer.
“It’s good to have those rocks,” said Masternick, 37. “I’m a baby compared to one-third of the staff here.”
The window for a new inspection opens this month, although that window extends up to 15 months, Masternick said. Not knowing when that inspection will come, operators work as if the inspectors will be in tomorrow, he said.
“We do it on a day-to-day basis,” he said. “That’s how we do things.”