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Blue ribbon facility

DEFICIENCY FREE:Hickory Creek at Peru celebrates another successful recertification survey from the Indiana State Department of Health with an award presented to HCP Administrator Brian Lessley.

BY Paige Conley - pconley@perutribune.com

Miami County skilled nursing center, Hickory Creek at Peru, received a deficiency-free survey from the Indiana State Department of Health for the second year in a row.

According to HCP Administrator Brian Lessley, the state visits all of the nursing centers each year to inspect various aspects of how the facility is keeping records, how they perform assorted treatments, if the facility is following state guidelines to their satisfaction and so on.

The state officials also speak with residents at the facility to get their feedback as well.

“It’s a process designed really to find fault so when you get through one of those and get a clean bill of health from them it’s treated like a big deal,” Lessley said. “Roughly eight percent of buildings in the state achieve that.”

“A perfect survey or a deficiency free just essentially means they didn’t find anything that affected our quality of care with our residents,” said Hickory Creek Healthcare Director of Operations Ruth Fuchs. “So it’s just providing the best care we can give on any given day and we know we can’t be perfect, but we want to be as close as possible.”

That’s why the organization, Hickory Creek Healthcare Foundation founded by Francis Crosby, and HCP’s hospital partners hosted a celebration Wednesday afternoon in honor of the facility and their great work at maintaining a clean and caring environment for residents.

“Suburban Health and Henry Community Hospital throw these parties or celebrations just to celebrate the team, celebrate the community and overall just the success of the facility,” Fuchs said.

The good report from the state not only demonstrates the facility’s worth to future residents, but it “hopefully serves some testament that we (the facility) are heading in the right direction,” Lessley said.

The celebration was attended by some residents of the facility, community members, staff and foundation officials. While Hickory Creek at Peru is just one of 15 locations under the nonforprofit organization, foundation officials still try to make it a point to stop by and celebrate with staff when they can, according to Lessley.

“They’ve been very supportive and we always have what we need to do right by the residents,” he said. “We’re happy to at least bring these type of results to him (Crosby) so he knows we are carrying out his mission.”

The report to Lessley is an important factor of measuring success because it’s considered one of the big hurdles to overcome over the course of the year.

“It’s like the foundation that you build everything else off of,” Lessley said. “If you’re not giving good care then everything else is just meaningless.”

However, there are still other factors to consider like the morality of the staff, having a solid team to care for residents and financial performance.

According to Lessley, the real people who should be acknowledged are the staff who put in the hard work to maintain a top facility and the residents. That’s who the celebration is really for in the end.

“This is really about the staff and the residents,” he said.

Hickory Creek at Peru is located at 390 West Boulevard and residents interested in learning more about what the facility has to offer can call 765-473-4900 or visit their website.