Advantage Living Centers – A Leader in Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease Care

January is National Mental Health Month and at Advantage Living Centers (ALC) we take a holistic approach to caring for and supporting our residents who have mental health diagnoses.  Most people think of Mental Health as depression or anxiety, but Dementia, including Alzheimer’s, is a significant Mental Health condition that effects more than 5 million Americans today. By 2050, this number is projected to rise to nearly 14 million.

In response to the need for quality care for people with Dementia, Advantage Living Centers has taken steps to expand Memory Care programming, which offers the public high quality care givers and programming designed to support individuals throughout the Dementia process.  Team members working with our residents are Certified Dementia Practitioners (CDP) with ongoing education through the CARES online training program.

What does this mean for you and your loved one?  This means you have a quality option to help you through the disease process.  Whether you need a support group, short term respite or long term placement, Advantage is ready to be your partner in care.   At Advantage Living Centers we work closely with the Alzheimer’s Association Michigan Chapter, participating in walks, raising funds and offering continuing education courses internally and to the public. We find it incredibly important to keep ourselves as well as our staff educated on all stages of the disease.

It is important to know the warning signs of the onset and progression of Alzheimer’s.  Unfortunately, the disease often develops years before it is outwardly noticeable. Individuals with Dementia, including  Alzheimer’s Disease, will often seem fine and symptom free on the outside, but on the inside toxic changes are taking place. Signs of early on-set Alzheimer’s can begin as early as 30s years old to mid-60s.

Overall, tell tale signs of Alzheimer’s can include, memory loss, repeating questions, trouble handling bills, wandering and getting lost, problems recognizing family and friends, to name a few. So now you’re asking yourself, what’s next? Although our hopes are high for the future, there is currently no cure for Alzheimer’s Disease. On the bright side, there is an ever-growing population of individuals and researchers who devote their working lives to helping residents and their families live with this disease. Currently, the approach to helping cope with Alzheimer’s is assisting people to maintain mental function, manage behavioral symptoms and slow down the disease process. There are several drugs available to help manage Alzheimer’s, but the absolute best therapy starts with family and loved ones. Know the warning signs, seek help and stay educated.

Discovering or dealing with Alzheimer’s may not be easy. We are here to help. As stated earlier Advantage Living Centers is committed to a future with state of the art memory care units in our facilities. We are also proud to offer Alzheimer Support Groups, in collaboration with the Alzheimer’s Association, at three of our facilities in Battle Creek, Redford and Armada. Everyone is welcome and we would be honored to partner with you to support you and your family in this journey.

Daily Care, Extraordinarily Done: Certified Nursing Assistants at Advantage Living Centers

One of the most personal relationships residents develop while they are in our care at Advantage Living Centers is with our Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs). These dedicated men and women wear many hats and their commitment to our residents is unmatched.


It’s National CNA Week, so this week we are celebrating all of the great work our CNAs do on a daily basis – their actions are pivotal to the day-to-day operations of all of the Advantage facilities.


Certified Nursing Assistants are responsible for the direct daily care of residents at our facilities; everything from getting ready in the morning to serving meals, taking vitals, transportation and our residents’ nighttime routines (just to name a few).  


As one of our CNAs put it, “You become their family when theirs cannot be there. Your patients learn to trust you both as a caregiver and as a friend because of the time spent with them. You learn their favorite hobbies, music, games, meals, as well as their least-favorite people or dessert from the cafeteria. You are there to watch them laugh and smile but also to comfort them through tears and pain.”


When unexpected emergencies arise, CNAs ensure the little details aren’t forgotten. Their hard work is crucial to the healing process for short term residents and the daily comfort of those with us long term.


All of us here at Advantage Living Centers are incredibly appreciative and thankful for the 575 CNAs caring for residents across our facilities. You have one of the most important and pivotal jobs in the world, and we thank you for all that you do!

Helping Hearts: Advantage Health Centers and the American Heart Association

AHA Heart Walk 1

The Centers for Disease Control reports that heart disease is currently the deadliest disease facing the U.S., taking the lives of 610,000 Americans per year – that’s one in four deaths.  It changes the lives of men, women and children across Michigan and the country including some of those at Advantage Living Center facilities. Some of our residents suffer from heart disease and the effects of stroke, a condition our staff is knowledgeable on

Advantage Living Centers became involved with the American Heart Association for two reasons.

First, we wanted to create a healthier environment for our staff and residents, particularly one that focused on making healthy food choices and increased exercise. The American Heart Association supported us with their Healthy Food and Beverage Toolkit. This was a great resource for our staff along with residents and their families looking to make heart health a priority.

Second, we serve many residents during short and long term stays, who have cardiac and related conditions and we wanted to be involved in educating both them and the public on how to prevent heart disease. Our staff has become more educated on how to prevent and treat cardiac disease as well as the early warning signs and symptoms of heart disease and heart attacks. Many of our facilities have cardiologists who come to our facilities 2-3 times per month to treat our residents and our therapists are skilled in post stroke care. These therapists and cardiologists work closely with each other to help residents recover after cardiac events such as heart attack and congestive heart failure.

4 years ago, Reggie and I became involved in American Heart Association’s Executive Leadership Team and board members for the Heart Walk.  Our staff, residents and supporters actively fundraised within the Advantage Living Centers communities with Reggie as the local spokesperson for the 2016 Detroit Heart Walk while Kelsey became a board member on the Southeastern Michigan American Heart Association. In July 2017, she will assume the role of President of the board.

In our time working with the American Heart Association, our facility teams have started Art for the Heart, which has become a national painting program for individuals with heart disease or stroke and have raised funds and participated in the Detroit Heart Walk with our Heart Mascot annually. 

It’s incredibly important for us to remember to take care of our hearts, not only now but throughout our lives. The major contributing factors of heart disease are high blood pressure, high cholesterol and smoking, with 47% of Americans have at least one of these risk factors.

Advantage Living Centers’ goal is to help heal hearts: the physical heart through our physicians, nurses and therapists and the emotional heart through every individual who touches the lives of the people who stay with us short and long term.  Our mission focuses on improving health and well being and to help people realize their potential in their future.


Kelsey Hastings, co-owner

Advantage Living Center Communities Offer High Employee Participation in Detroit Heart Walk

Advantage Living Center Communities Offer High Employee Participation in Detroit Heart Walk

100+ staff members volunteer to raise awareness of cardiovascular disease, stroke and overall heart health


Detroit, Mich. – More than 100 Advantage Living Centers employees participated Saturday in the American Heart Association’s 2017 Detroit Heart Walk, raising more than $12,000.


Advantage’s senior leadership are proud of the outstandingly high employee turnout at the event. Co-owners Reginald Hartsfield and Kelsey Hastings both have served on the Heart Walk Executive Leadership Team for the past three years.


“The overwhelming amount of employee participation truly reflects our organization’s dedication to better health and wellness in not only the Detroit community, but the entire Michigan community as well,” said Hastings. “Reducing the incidence of cardiovascular disease and stroke is incredibly important to all of us at Advantage, so we were glad to have a local opportunity to raise awareness of the importance of heart health.”


Twelve individual teams participated under the Advantage name, representing both facilities and families.


“We really appreciate it when employees come out and participate in community events and love when it happens in these numbers,” said Hartsfield. “Especially as we age, it’s important to take care of our heart health – some of our residents struggle with cardiovascular disease and the effects of stroke, so we were incredibly proud to participate as well as raise funds and awareness.”


The leading cause of death in the United States, heart disease causes 25 percent of all deaths according to the Centers for Disease Control. Certain risk factors and lifestyles can put people at a higher risk for heart problems including diabetes, obesity, poor diet, lack of physical activity and excessive alcohol consumption.


About Advantage Living Centers: Advantage Living Centers’ vision is to provide premium, patient directed, and highly skilled post-acute and rehabilitative care in a compassionate, professional environment. With 10 locations across the state of Michigan, they are strongly committed to identifying each individual’s health and wellness goals and develop plans of care for successful outcomes. For more information, visit


About the American Heart Association: The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke –  the two leading causes of death in the world. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit or call any of our offices around the country.  Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Nursing Home Week

Advantage Living Centers Celebrates National Nursing Home Week


Welcome to National Nursing Home Week! Every year, the American Health Care Association dedicates one week to nursing home residents, staff members and supporters – this year, it’s May 14-20.


At Advantage Living Centers, we love to celebrate the people who live and work with us. This week is not only a time to honor the heroes who help our residents heal and rehabilitate, but an opportunity for our residents to have fun and connect with one another, with staff and their families, and with the community.  


During Nursing Home Week, our schedule is jam packed with events every day, including musical performances, picnics, theme days, arts displays, field day competitions and more.  These fun-filled days bring a true spirit of joy throughout the organization as we capture the smiles and laughter of everyone in the Advantage family. This week, we are excited for the great opportunities to bring out the competitive side of our staff, show the tremendous talent and works of residents who display their works of art via our art gallery and much more.


We find Nursing Home Week so important here at Advantage Living Center because we want to show people how much we love and appreciate them. Skilled nursing facilities – more commonly known as nursing homes – truly are vibrant places live and recover. In addition, we hope the community is able to learn about and participate in the lives of people who stay at one of our facilities this week. We are always on the lookout for learning opportunities to share more about who Advantage Living Centers is and how we can further help the communities we serve.


Lastly, this week we hope that residents and their families along with our amazing staff members and supporters feel a sense of pride. Advantage is one of the largest skilled nursing and rehabilitation organizations in Michigan, which would not be possible without relentless support.


To everyone in our Advantage family, enjoy nursing home week and thank you for all that you do!

Advantage Live 0:05 Let’s Get Heart Healthy

Heart disease is the #1 cause of death in the world. At Advantage Living Centers, we are committed to reducing heart disease for our residents, our staff, and our community. Over the last few years, we have worked with our local American Heart Association to create awareness and raise funds. In 2016, we committed to healthy eating. This means changing our eating habits, modifying our favorite recipes, and making heart smart choices. Has it been easy? No. Are we committed? Yes. Are we spreading the word? Yes.

At our recent “Art for Heart” events, we walked the talk. Our chefs served heart healthy snacks such as fruit, veggies, dark chocolate, and salads while our residents, staff and family painted away their stress. To view photos of our “Art for Heart” events, go to Advantage News. For more information on heart healthy eating, visit the American Heart Association.

Manors Minute 0:04: Fighting Diabetes

According to the 2014 National Diabetes Statistics report, the percentage of Americans age 65 and older with diabetes is 25.9%, or 11.8 million seniors. After discovering diabetic related disease in their zip code is among the highest in the nation, Northwest Manor is taking the challenge of diabetes head on by focusing on diabetes education for their residents and staff, as well as to those who live and work in their community.

Northwest Manor’s programs focus on healthy living: taking control of diabetes, healthy food choices, fast food – making the right choices, and exercise. Their dietitian goes out into the community to give samples of meals, including soul food, that have been prepared using healthy techniques. The food prepared for the community is the same food served to Northwest Manor residents. For example, salt is not used, instead they use a variety of different sodium-free seasonings. In addition, Northwest Manor regularly hosts exercise classes including Zumba in the community.

Northwest Manor is leading the charge for diabetes education and reduction. For more information on diabetes, contact the American Diabetes Association.

Manors Minute 0:03: Staying Connected

With the plethora of iPads, Notebooks, Smartphones, Kindles and Nooks in the hands of everyone from the age of 1 to 101+, we realize the importance of “Staying Connected”.

The Manors provides Wireless Guest Access at all Manors centers for our residents and their guests. Residents can use the Wireless Guest Access to connect their device to our network so they can email their family and friends, view the latest family photos, stay connected via Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, and surf the web.

In addition to wireless guest access, each of our centers has a resident computer area with access to the Internet.

Families and friends: make sure you stay connected with your loved ones when they are in our centers:
• Send those photos
• Post to their Facebook page
• PIN something to their wall
• Show them the latest updates when you visit
Let them feel the love!

For the guest wireless access code, the guest wireless usage terms, or for assistance accessing the guest wireless network, please see the receptionist or the Activity Director in your Center.

Happy Surfing!

Manors Minute 0:02: Where’s My Hoverboard?

In the cult classic movie series about a time traveling teen and the wacky scientist who built a time machine out of Delorean, the technologic advances seen in the film were both astonishing and amazing. Most can remember the wonder they felt as they watched the film and dreamed of one day owning their own rocket-powered hoverboard or a one-size jacket that tailors itself to your body AND can blow dry your clothes in seconds… while you are wearing them.

Although we are still a few years away from modern science perfecting those concepts, the advancements we have made in modern science and technology today are more than worthy of acknowledgement. The modern processor has become exponentially faster and is factors smaller than anything we could have imaged back in 1985 (the year our beloved classic series took us into the past, future, and beyond). Thanks to such advancements, modern items like smart phones, tablets, and even smart watches are permeating our society – becoming a benchmark in both personal and professional life as a medium for entertainment, social interaction, business management, efficiency, and more.

Here at The Manors, we have not ignored such an important societal shift and are working hard to be sure we are taking advantage of trending technologies that increase business efficiency and time management.

By the end of 2014, all The Manors facilities will be flush with new tablets, mobile laptops, and other devices to assist and aide our caregivers in their daily tasks and assignments. And with a new high speed network just on the horizon, The Manors facilities will not only be able to provide “excellent care for an independent life”, but we will be able to provide that care efficiently and quickly as well.

Armed with new devices and a lightning fast network, the caregivers at The Manors will be able to input information into our new EHR (see Manors Minute 0:01) almost seamlessly and effortlessly allowing for more resident centered care improving the overall quality of care. In addition to the new devices and network, Advantage Management Group/The Manors is always looking for new technologies, software, and other opportunities that will provide a better experience for any who pass through our doors. So feel free to stop in to any of our locations to find out more about our upcoming technologies and network and how they will make us work better for our communities, our residents… our family.

Manors Minute 0:01: Electronic Health Records

Apples and Androids and… EHR’s? Oh my, indeed. The mighty roar of the technology boom can be heard and felt throughout the entirety of the healthcare industry and The Manors is no exception to this trend. With healthcare reform charging forward with full force, CHANGE IS INEVITABLE.

Every day you can find articles detailing the many successes (and failures) of healthcare companies throughout the country who are all trying to navigate the latest mandates for HIPAA/HITECH compliance and choose an appropriate EHR (electronic health record). With so many changes to the healthcare landscape, you must wonder how we here at The Manors are staying ahead of the curve?

With over 300 electronic health record (EHR) systems available on the market in the US alone, it can be mind-boggling to think how ANY healthcare organization can narrow it down to just one EHR… Especially when this one EHR needs to satisfy all the needs of the doctors, nurses, and aides who provide care, insurance companies who bill for services, state regulators who monitor care, and, most importantly, the residents and families who depend on all the aforementioned parties to have accurate and available health information.

Keeping all those factors (and more) in mind, The Manors’s team introduced PointClickCare, or PCC, as its primary EHR system. With the help of PCC, the Manors will be able to provide even better care for all who choose to find a home at one of our facilities.

On March 3rd, 2014, Southgate Manor, found on Trenton Road in Southgate, MI, was our first facility to “go live” with the PCC program. Since the introduction of PCC, healthcare staff at Southgate Manor commented on how thorough the program is while still being easy to use. It is this ease of use that is shaving hours off charting time allowing our staff more time to focus on what is most important – the residents and families. With the selection of such a comprehensive EHR, like PointClickCare, the Manor’s has taken a huge step in ensuring that care-giving is the primary focus for all its staff.

As of June 1st, 2014, PointClickCare was implemented at all The Manors facilities. Feel free to stop in to any of our locations to find out how PointClickCare has made us work better for our communities, our residents… our family.