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Nursing Home Grant Program: Resources

All Wisconsin nursing homes can use resources developed through the nursing home grant program.

These resources include:

Care programs

Dementia Arts Mapping - observational methods for documenting impacts of poetry and recreation in care settings.

Alzheimer's Poetry Project Dementia Arts Mapping final report (PDF)

The service was provided for 1.5 to 2 hours of 1:1 direct member (patient) contact for the first three weeks of the month, for a total of 36 sessions for the year's grant period. Experiencing the positive healing subtleties, while being present with and building a weekly relationship with members, with often severely limited communication capabilities (end-stage dementia) often goes beyond the above Before/After data.

Therapeutic Harp and Flute Project final report (PDF)

An innovative technology-based intergenerational social engagement partnership project between the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and Fairhaven Senior Services to improve skilled nursing residents' quality of life.

University students to address social isolation and loneliness in older adults final report (PDF)

Grantee: Center for Community Stewardship

Over a three-month period, 20 nursing homes will be trained in the methods and techniques of the Alzheimer's Poetry Project (APP) and begin to implement the program with their residents. APP is a unique and innovative program that uses the power of the spoken word and builds on the long tradition of poetry as an oral art form. The use of well-loved, classic and humorous poems, reinforced with props or fragrance is used to engage residents to participate. The use of repetition and moving of hands with the help of touch therapy also helps reinforce the rhythm of the poem. This innovative, non-pharmacological intervention communication tool is designed to help improve the quality of life of residents with dementia and other psychosocial needs. At the end of the training, the 20 nursing homes will be certified in the APP program.

Alzheimer's Poetry Project final report (PDF)

Grantee: United Lutheran Program for the Aging

The goal of this project is to alleviate the symptoms associated with dementia, depression, and anxiety through sensory and aromatherapy treatment. Objectives include developing individualized sensory and aromatherapy plans with customized oils for each resident as part of their life enrichment care plan. The nursing home will also have a project-oriented activity in which residents create a wearable pendant, i.e., necklace or bracelet, to hold their oils. The effectiveness of aromatherapy and sensory treatment will measure symptom presence by consistent staff and recorded based on a numerical scale rating. The results will be noted in regular charting and during care conferences. Evaluation will be ongoing as part of care delivery and further measured and reinforced through a review of aromatherapy and sensory treatment at care conferences.

Aromatherapy to Enhance Care for Luther Manor Residents final report (PDF)

Grantee: Aspirus Care & Rehab - Medford

Aspirus Care & Rehab - Medford implemented a very successful Chair Yoga program designed to reduce falls, improve sleep, provide better pain management, and increase range of motion among participating residents. To learn how you can establish a program in your facility, including a Chair Yoga Manual developed by Aspirus Care & Rehab, visit:

Grantee: Miravida Living Campus

Miravida Living has implemented a successful Cycling Without Age (CWA) program designed to enhance the quality of life for persons living in skilled nursing facilities. The CWA program has had a positive impact on the well-being of nursing home residents and staff. As part of the grant agreement, a manual and videos were developed to assist other nursing homes in Wisconsin to start their own program.

Grantee: Cycling Without Age, Inc.

Cycling Without Age (CWA) is a program that helps nursing home residents stay connected with their communities through the use of three-wheeled cycle "trishaws." Originating in Denmark and active in more than 40 countries, CWA programs have enhanced the lives of residents around the world through the simple act of sharing trishaw rides in the outdoors. Wisconsin is currently the state with the most active CWA chapters in the U.S. and will grow significantly through a federal Civil Money Penalty grant available to federally certified nursing homes.

Cycling Without Age (2018-2020) final report (PDF)

Grantee: University of Wisconsin Board of Regents, Research & Sponsored Programs Center for Health Systems Research and Analysis

Development of a Nursing Home Clinical Performance Measurement System that defines quality and how to measure quality outcome for statewide implementation.

Data & Performance Measurement to Improve Nursing Home Quality final report (PDF)

Grantee: Brewster Village

A pilot program that uses Fitbits and iPads to monitor sleep patterns and routines of nursing home residents with dementia. Studies have shown that sleep disturbances affect overall quality of life. The information collected will help staff assess sleep patterns with minimal disruption to residents. Understanding sleep in residents with dementia will be used to distinguish fall patterns, monitor medication adjustment, and improve overall psychosocial well-being. Brewster Village will work with the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh to analyze the data collected.

Fitbits and iPads to Monitor Sleep Patterns final report (PDF)

Grantee: Music & Memory, Inc.

The program will develop student-run Music & Memory programs in certified Music & Memory nursing homes. Anticipated outcomes include increased number of volunteers in nursing homes and residents benefiting from intergenerational relationships, and continued reduction in the use of antipsychotic medications.

Grantee: Good Samaritan Society-Lodi

The Good Samaritan Society - Lodi/School District of Lodi Intergenerational Programming is building relationships between the generations with their school-nursing home program. The after-school program includes special events where students and residents foster relationships using prepared activities. These activities develop a social connection between the students and residents, establish positive relationships, and respect for another generation. It is a win-win program for both generations.

Intergenerational Program - Engagement with a Student final report (PDF)

Grantee: Department of Health Services Division of Quality Assurance & Division of Long Term Care

Implementation of the Wisconsin Music & Memory Initiative to fund 100 nursing homes to become certified as a Music & Memory facility and provide equipment for 15 residents with Alzheimer's and related dementias. Certification includes three 90-minute webinars for nursing home staff. Expected outcomes include a reduction in antipsychotic and anti-anxiety medication, reduced agitation and enhanced socialization for people with dementia.

Grantee: Music & Memory

Phase II of the Wisconsin Music & Memory Initiative to certify 150 additional nursing homes to become Music & Memory facilities. Expected outcomes include a reduction in antipsychotic and anti-anxiety medication, reduced agitation and enhanced socialization for people with dementia. A major component of Music & Memory certification is to engage the community to help expand the project within the participating nursing home and into non-participating nursing homes.

Grantee: Music & Memory, Inc

Implement Phase III of the Wisconsin Music & Memory program. Phase III will bring in the remaining 135 nursing homes who wish to participate as a Music & Memory nursing home and provide equipment for between seven to 10 residents to listen to personalized music. Phase III will establish relationships between 50 Wisconsin nursing homes and area schools to assist in the implementation of the Music & Memory program and develop a blueprint for other nursing homes to replicate a student volunteer program.

Grantee: Lutheran Homes of Oshkosh, Inc

Namaste Care is an innovative approach for people with severe dementia who are not able to participate in traditional activity programs. In a comforting environment with seasonal scents, calming music, etc., residents receive meaningful activities through a caring touch by a specially trained staff.

Namaste Care final report (PDF)

Grantee: Lutheran Homes of Oshkosh, Inc.

Lutheran Homes of Oshkosh has established a Noah's Landing Program where dogs and cats have become residents of the nursing home. Residents have the opportunity to care for the pets as if they were their own. Therapy programs have to be adapted to lessen reliance on traditional therapy equipment and induce grooming dogs to build strength. The facility has created a video and program manual with lessons learned and a tool for planning program replication for other facilities.

Grantee: Wisconsin Department of Health Services Division of Long Term Care

Develop a Nursing Home Falls Prevention Program that will identify nursing homes with high and low falls with injury rates, test a mentor/mentee program, test the program for effectiveness and disseminate successful falls prevention programs and track the incidence of falls in nursing homes.

Nursing Home Falls Prevention Initiative final report (PDF)

Grantee: Midwest Lighting Institute

Studies have shown the benefits of designing lighting to help improve alertness, cognition, sleep and mental health. The Midwest Lighting Institute will conduct a pilot study in two Wisconsin nursing homes to determine if the installation of energy-efficient LED lighting will improve health by helping residents maintain better daytime alertness and cognitive function, improve sleep and reduce their symptoms of depression and also improve safety by helping residents see better and move around more easily. This pilot is an opportunity to understand how the right spectrum of light may improve the lives of nursing homes residents.

Nursing Home Lighting to Improve Resident Health & Lower Fall Rates final report (PDF)

Grantee: Dove Healthcare-West Eau Claire

The facility will purchase and use a pressure mapping system to assess and monitor residents at risk for developing pressure injuries. Facility staff will be trained in the technology and use of the mapping system. Individual staff will be assigned responsibility for conducting pressure mapping on an ongoing basis in the facility. The facility will analyze the data and report on the outcomes of the use of the pressure mapping system related to the speed of healing existing pressure injuries, the prevention of future injuries and the improvement in resident satisfaction and quality of life. The grantee will share the results of the data analysis with nursing home associations, nursing homes and the Wisconsin Director of Nurses Council.

Pressure Redistribution System final report (PDF)

Grantee: Parkside Care Center

The SNOEZELEN Multi-Sensory Environment room offers residents with Alzheimer's disease a relaxing place to stimulate their senses through tactile, olfactory and visual stimuli and to reduce distress. Atrium Post-Acute Care of Little Chute established the program for their residents and provided information on the effect the room is having on the well-being of their residents.

SNOEZELEN Multi-Sensory Environment Room final report (PDF)

Grantee: Center for Health Systems Research and Analysis (CHSRA), University of Wisconsin - Madison

The Center for Health Systems Research and Analysis (CHSRA) will pilot test the Wisconsin Nursing Home Performance Measurement Reporting System in 20 nursing homes to determine the usefulness of the reporting system as a tool to identify areas for quality improvement. The Performance Measurement Report System will assist nursing homes in selecting which measures are most useful and to identify resources and protocols to use to improve or maintain a high level of measured performance.

Wisconsin Nursing Home Performance Measurement Reporting System final report (PDF)

Grantee: Park View Health Center

Park View Health Center residents will attend a "Write Your Life" workshop where they will be partnered with a high school or college student. The workshop gives residents an opportunity to share stories of their childhood, adult life or other events they have experienced. The stories will be recorded by the students and printed in a book for each resident. The completed books will be presented to the residents and their families at a celebratory banquet. Through this innovative project, the opportunity to tell their stories may help residents improve cognition, lessen depression, and improve behavioral functioning. An additional benefit is the development of intergenerational relationships that are created as a result of this project.

"Write Your Life" Project final report (PDF)

Training programs

Grantee: Office of Research & Sponsored Programs

Antibiotic start process and an inventory of the major decisional, behavioral and environmental factors that influence antibiotic prescribing decisions in nursing homes.

Antibiotic Use in Nursing Homes Research Project final report (PDF)

Grantee: Wisconsin Center for Performance Excellence (WCPE)

Implement a pilot program that will identify, develop and disseminate evidence-based technical assistance and resources to help 24 nursing homes achieve their quality and organizational goals.

Assist Nursing Homes Learn, Apply Quality Tools for Their QA Program final report (PDF)

Grantee: TimeSlips Creative Storytelling

Expanding on their previous project, TimeSlips Creative Storytelling, Inc. will implement a two-year project that will bring meaningful creative engagement techniques to 25 nursing homes. In year one, TimeSlips will train two lead facilitators at each nursing home to use their evidence-based creative engagement method. In year two, they will train and support the lead facilitators in the design and production of five regional festivals to share the resident's creative work with their broader communities. By building social connections through meaningful, creative engagement techniques, this program aims to improve the well-being of residents. Creative engagement is a powerful and evidence-based tool to improve resident quality of life by building relationships and increasing social connection in long-term care setting that builds strengths of people with dementia.

Creative Community of Care Training final report (PDF)

Grantee: TimeSlips Creative Storytelling

The TimeSlips Company will provide training to nursing home staff, families and volunteers in the use of symbolic and emotional language arts through storytelling. The storytelling strengthens communication and relationships with residents with dementia and increases engagement between staff and residents while reducing challenging behaviors and the use of antipsychotic drugs. At the end of the grant period, TimeSlips will analyze the feedback from the surveys completed by participants and report the results to the Department of Health Services.

Creative Storytelling Engagement Training final report (PDF)

Grantee: Wisconsin Department of Health Services, Division of Long Term Care

The Department of Health Services, Division of Long-Term Care, contracted with the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh to provide training for Wisconsin nursing home staff to increase competency in the areas of dementia, crisis response and challenging behaviors. The purpose of this project is to improve the competency of the nursing home workforce to meet the needs of residents with Alzheimer's or a related dementia.

Dementia Training final report (PDF)

Implement a Director of Nursing Educational Development Program to improve the performance and retention of Directors of Nursing and improve the quality of care provided in Wisconsin nursing homes.

Grantee: Division of Quality Assurance and Wisconsin Healthcare-Associated Infection in Long-Term Care Coalition

The Division of Quality Assurance and Wisconsin Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAI) in Long-Term Care Coalition will provide five regional workshops in 2016 and a statewide conference in 2017 for nursing home staff to enhance infection control and prevention practices in their facility. The training will help facilities develop and implement effective policies and procedures and increase staff knowledge of infection prevention and control standards of practice. The coalition anticipates that the increased knowledge will result in better care for residents and a more prudent use of antibiotics.

Healthcare-Associated Infections in LTC Workshops final report (PDF)

Grantee: Center for Career Development and Employability Training (CCDET)

The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Center for Career Development and Employability Training developed a two-hour online training course designed to increase safety by preventing violence, improve the quality of life for residents and help assure the safety of frail, elderly residents.

Increasing Safety by Preventing Violence final report (PDF)

Grantee: Alzheimer's Association

Developing and implementing a comprehensive train-the-trainer education program regarding sexuality and intimacy in dementia care.

Intimacy and Sexuality in Dementia Care final report (PDF)

Grantee: Wisconsin Director of Nursing Council Education Forum

The Wisconsin Director of Nursing Council - Education Forum, Inc. will provide seven daylong workshops statewide for teams of Nursing Home Administrators (NHA) and Directors of Nursing (DON) to focus on developing leadership skills, principles of systems implementation and systems maintenance. Often, deficits in quality care can be linked to a lack of leadership and systems development and maintenance. The workshops will provide education and interactive guidance regarding these issues and include development of an action plan for process improvement by each team tailored to the needs of their facility. Part of the learning experience is to be able to effectively implement change in a system that will impact the quality of care and life for residents. The success of the program will be evaluated during regular follow-up contacts by the trainers with redirection provided to the teams as necessary.

Leadership & Systems Implementation 101 Workshop Program final report (PDF)

Grantee: Alzheimer's Association-Southeastern Chapter and Greater Wisconsin Chapter

Provide training for nursing home staff to increase skills and competency in approaches to prevent and/or manage challenging behaviors with nursing home residents who have dementia.

Managing Difficult Behaviors: We All Hold the Keys final report (PDF)

Grantee: Wisconsin Reallocation of Underspent Funds

The national Music & Memory organization will reallocate unspent CMP funds awarded in 2015 in the amount of $41,871 to cover the renewal fees for 311 nursing facilities for one year, to increase sustainability of the Music & Memory programs initiated in Wisconsin. Funds will be used to bolster the existing programs through resources and support delivered online through the members-only Care Community website. The resource provides training and support for one year to help new staff and newly assigned staff keep abreast of best practices in providing personalized music via iPods to their residents.

Grantee: Wisconsin Center for Performance Excellence

The Wisconsin Center for Performance Excellence (WCPE) has developed an effective method to help nursing homes narrow the gap between their current performance and future potential with the expected outcome to improve resident health and safety. WCPE will hold five workshops across the state for staff from 105 nursing homes with a one- or two-star rating from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services designed to improve their performance using the Eight Disciplines method. Workshop participants will develop corrective action plans as part of the workshop. Facilities will then participate in a two-hour interactive group webinar four weeks later to facilitate their transition into individual action projects. The webinar will provide tools, resources and expectations for accomplishing their projects. Nursing homes will be given six weeks to complete their project. WCPE will provide individual coaching to facilities as necessary. WCPE will conduct a two-hour group webinar approximately one week after the project performance period to answer questions, discuss lessons learned and instruct participants on the report-out procedure. WCPE will coach and support individual nursing homes in their report preparations as needed.

Performance Improvement final report (PDF)

Grantee: Office of Caregiver Quality

The Office of Caregiver Quality (OCQ), within the Division of Quality Assurance (DQA), plans to increase awareness among nursing home providers and caregivers of the potential for violations of residents' rights and caregiver misconduct by using handheld devices to capture images of residents. OCQ will develop posters to display in staff break areas and brochures to give to employees when they are hired and at ongoing training events. A webcast will be developed to assist nursing homes in introducing this topic to their staff.

Social Media Awareness final report (PDF)

Grantee: The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System

The University of Wisconsin - Madison will design and implement a statewide training program to successfully implement the new federal infection control regulations. The proposal includes modifications to the Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) toolkit that will also be part of the statewide Infection Preventionists training.

The training program will include:

  • Core competencies of the individual responsible for infection control and prevention in a Wisconsin nursing home.
  • A specific training curriculum that targets the core Infection Control and Prevention Officer tasks and responsibilities.
  • A list of training resources to help individuals achieve core infection control and prevention competencies.
  • A plan to disseminate infection control and prevention training throughout the state of Wisconsin.
  • Testing the effectiveness of the training resources for 20 individuals who are currently responsible for infection prevention in Wisconsin nursing homes.
  • Training the next generation of Wisconsin nursing home infection preventionists final report (PDF)

Grantee: Second Wind Dreams, Inc.

The Virtual Dementia Tour provides insight into the world of dementia for caregivers, families, and members of the community by providing individuals with the opportunity to experience what dementia is like through an individualized learning experience. The two-year training program will be provided at all nursing homes in Wisconsin and include for each facility, facilitator training, a training manual and equipment, including headphones, stopwatches, clothing, glasses, show inserts, etc. The success of the training will be determined by pre/post evaluations obtained at each nursing home training session.

Virtual Dementia Tour final report (PDF)

Grantee: Wisconsin Department of Health Services

DHS, in partnership with nursing homes, LeadingAge Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Health Care Association, the Wisconsin Board on Aging and Long-Term Care, and the Wisconsin Technical College System will develop the DHS Caregiver Career Program designed to add up to 3,000 nurse aides to the workforce. The program will offer training and testing at no cost to students, and a $500 retention bonus for nurse aides after six months on the job at a nursing home. The program includes a marketing and recruitment plan and engagement program to increase awareness about the value of caregiving and the change caregivers can make in the lives of Wisconsin's elders.

WisCaregiver Career Program final report (PDF)

Grantee: Wisconsin Health Care Association and LeadingAge Wisconsin

WisCaregiver Careers is a workforce development program administered by the Wisconsin Health Care Association and LeadingAge Wisconsin designed to address the CNA shortage in Wisconsin nursing homes by providing CNA free training, free certification testing, and sign-on or retention bonuses. The program seeks to encourage new workers to enter the field of caregiving by lowering the costs of becoming a CNA and by making training more readily accessible.

Disclaimer about advisory council content

This content reflects the views and opinions of the advisory council. It may not reflect the official policy or position of DHS.

Last revised April 1, 2024