At The Village at Skyline Pines, the door is always open, and quality care is a 24-hour built-in amenity.
Cory and Kelli Back’s all-access availability has become an appreciated staple in the daily routine for the facility’s residents, their families and staff.
“This is their home and we want them to feel like part of the family” said Cory Back, General Manager at The Village at Skyline Pines Assisted Living & Memory Care. “Our open-door policy means our families know who is caring for their loved ones. Our being in the building, on-site every day, allows us to see the faces of those our decisions affect. If a family member brings a concern, it can be resolved immediately with no need for outside involvement”.
Important changes and updates
When Cory and his wife, Kelli, the facility Administrator who also happens to be a Nurse, took over management of The Village in March 2021, they implemented immediate changes to elevate the level of care and service, including the complete re-training of all staff, bringing in new medical equipment, introducing new technologies that allow for better resident care, and installing 50 security cameras throughout the property so staff can always see what is happening in all areas for resident safety.
Probably the biggest single change was the communication with residents, families and staff. That started by eliminating the automated voicemail messaging system that prompted callers to press various numbers for different services.
“Real people answer our phones now,” Cory said, and that includes their daughter, who also fills in where needed, whether that be greeting visitors at the front desk, answering phones or helping with housekeeping.
They then began communicating pandemic information, alerts and necessary educational links to social media platforms so the residents, their families and the community could be better informed and have up-to-date accurate information regarding the virus. “Since the Pandemic began, Kelli and I have put the highest priority in keeping our residents safe, which is no easy task. Our response to COVID-19 has always been very aggressive. We feel the information needs to be shared rather than kept secret, so families will know what we are doing and others can use the information to keep those they care about safe,” Cory explained.
Excellent care is personal
Since their arrival, the husband-and-wife duo have connected either by phone or in person with each of the families who have members living at the facility to let them know they are available 24/7 to respond to any question or need that might arise. “Our cell phone numbers are on our business cards at the front desk. We are available day or night” Kelli said.
“Excellent care really does come from leading by example,” Kelli said. “Cory and I spend a lot of time on the floor with our residents, so the staff and residents know who we are and that we are here for them. They can see us every day, which builds trust. And that’s a huge thing with elderly care. People trust us to make the right decisions for their physical and mental well-being.”
“Unlike an off-site management company,” said Cory, “we see firsthand whose care we are responsible for.”
A splendid location
The Village at Skyline Pines facility, which sits on 40 acres above the bluffs near Mount Rushmore Road, is located in the heart of the medical corridor of south Rapid City. The nurturing wilderness environment features courtyards and walking paths with a bird’s-eye view of the city and canyon below, complete with frequent deer and turkey sightings. A re-created Main Street inside the property features a “cobblestone” walkway surrounded by small town favorites, including a hair salon, theatre, bistro, chapel, library and post office. For food aficionados, an on-site executive chef and his team cook up everything from prime rib and salmon to pizza and burgers in a dining room with the best views in town. Residents can also order a la carte menu items.
“Between the care and the nurturing environment chock full of amenities,” Cory said, “people can have the life they dreamed of the minute they walk through the door here.”