Crystal Cornwell, RN, wellness director at Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care says wellness is a major factor of nursing care at the center.

by James Coburn, Staff Writer

Crystal Cornwell has always worked with seniors during her 26 years of nursing. She recently joined the staff of Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care for the opportunity of opening a new facility, said Cornwell, RN, wellness director.
Cornwell became a registered nurse by taking stepping stones up the career ladder. She was first a CNA and later earned her nursing degrees, associates and bachelor at Platt College, she said.
Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care opened in late June. The grand opening is set for August 10th from 5-7 p.m. at 17701 N. Western in Oklahoma City nearby Edmond.
It is an assisted living and licensed community. So they are able to help people with bathing, dressing, activities of daily living and medications, said Anita Kelley, community relations director.
Memory care offers a home-like atmosphere with meals and activities. The memory care residents are engaged to have a purpose in life. Every 45 minutes a staff member engages them with an activity.
“We feel it’s very important for them to feel useful, but also have things that bring them enjoyment,” Kelley said.
The nursing staff at Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care has CNAs, CMAs, and two registered nurses including Cornwell. It is one of the few communities that realizes the need to have two RNs on staff, Cornwell said.
“We’ve taken a lot of time to hand-pick staff that has worked with seniors in the past that has a true passion for doing that work,” Cornwell said. “They are not someone just coming in to perform a job. They’ve been trained in this job.”
“They truly care about what they’re doing, the reasons that they’re doing it. And we are all seeking knowledge to learn more so we can definitely support each of these people as they chose to move forward in their career.”
Cornwell has spent a great deal of time with each resident to determine their likes and dislikes according to their needs. This enables a tailor-made structure for staff to respond to their needs. Cornwell said Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care is fortunate to be utilizing technology and systems to align with the staff.
“Staff members will have an iPod with a care plan. Their service plan is right there on that iPod,” she said. “So there’s never a question about the services they’re supposed to provide because those assignments come right up to them from the time that they log in.”
The nursing staff documents everything they accomplish when it is completed, Cornwell continued. In real time, Cornwell can look at any of those services rendered in order to provide a clear and updated picture of their loved one’s daily life.
There are activities their loved one attends, and documentation includes how long a response takes from the nursing staff once a resident pushes a call light, Cornwell explained.
Families know how long a nursing staff member attends to their loved one in a room, including showering and what they ordered for their meals.
“So truly, I have information at my fingertips I can give families a good picture of what’s going on with their loved one,” she said. “But also as I overlook those things I can tell when people maybe change their eating habits for today, or maybe they have called for assistance more often. It will allow me to hopefully pinpoint some illnesses that are moving in early onset so we can treat them.”
Being a nurse takes a lot of focus and diligent work. So when Cornwell is at home, she often spends time with her grandchildren, she said.
“We love the summertime. We love to go swimming and we have a pool,” she said.
Two of her grandchildren are involved in sports, so she often attends tournaments and enjoys being a part of that. She also loves to read. Finding a new book is a favorite pastime, she added.
Her nursing career was inspired by her children. Her son was very sick and spent time in a neonatal intensive care unit.
“My little child, my son, he was there in the nursing neonatal for about three months,” she said.
At that time, she worked as an executive secretary. The support that she received from the nurses that was life changing.
“They were so supportive during what was the hardest time in my life,” Cornwell said. “I didn’t know from one day to the next if I would be taking my child home with me. And they provided me with an immense amount of support and it just inspired me to want to do that for others.”
Today, at Stone Creek, Cornwell believes they will offer a higher standard of care.
“We are looking into the wellness. We have the ability to communicate with families to give them a true idea of what’s going on with their loved ones,” she said.