Mountainside Residential Care Center marks 15th year

Margaretville — Mountainside Residential Care Center, an 82-bed skilled nursing facility, is marking its 15th anniversary.
Mountainside (MRCC) had its origins as part of a skilled nursing facility housed within the Margaretville Hospital, but the need for greater nursing home capacity was soon apparent. Plans for a separate facility were developed and in 1994 Mountainside was opened adjacent to the hospital.
The state-of-the-art facility has long been recognized as being among New York’s finest nursing homes. An example of MRCC’s high level of care occurred in January when the state Department of Health conducted an unannounced four-day survey. Following a very thorough review of all phases of Mountainside’s operation, the facility was certified as being deficiency free.
Mountainside Administrator Philip Mehl said New York State nursing homes are cited for an average of 6-9 violations during these Department of Health (DOH) reviews. During the January review, five DOH personnel inspected every aspect of the nursing home’s operation — including care audits, chart audits, safety procedures and interviews with staff and resident’s family members.
The results of the DOH survey provide an example of the type of professionalism and attention to detail that residents and their families can count on at Mountainside. But there are many other factors that make Mountainside stand out.
As the name suggests, the facility is located in a picturesque setting, nestled against the stunning Pakatakan Mountain. The views from MRCC and inspirational location both contribute to its truly homelike atmosphere. Beautiful gardens and patios off the back of the building add to the pleasant surroundings. This setting has also resulted in an expansion of the residents’ gardening programs.
Mountainside’s professional, compassionate staff provides a caring atmosphere that enhances the comfort of residents.
Although the building is just 15 years old, an extensive revamping has recently been completed. This work includes new flooring, painting and furniture throughout the rooms and hallways on the residential levels.
Mr. Mehl pointed out that MRCC officials have placed a strong focus on resident-centered care. This philosophy involves a commitment that ensures staff are sensitive to residents’ needs and schedules.
“It’s a move away from institutional living, toward more individualized care,” the administrator explained.
Toward this end, Mountainside has expanded its therapy to include Restorative Nursing Rehabilitation, in addition to physical, occupational and speech therapies. This program is designed to help residents maintain independence and functionality.
Also new at Mountainside is a Wii computerized simulation device that residents use to enjoy activities such as bowling and golf — the movements of which improve residents’ range of motion. The Wii is utilized as part of a varied activity schedule that includes games and fun exercises, as well as special visits by guests who provide entertainment such as concerts and dancing exhibitions.
Mr. Mehl pointed out that Mountainside was one of the first skilled nursing facilities to utilize Pet Therapy, a program in which animals are brought to visit residents. The benefits of such interactions with animals have been well documented. Dogs, cats, goats, ducks and rabbits have been among the guests welcomed as part of the Pet Therapy program.
From a medical standpoint, Mountainside residents also benefit from the close proximity of Margaretville Hospital.
For more information about the facility’s offerings, or to arrange a tour, please call 845 586-1800. Mountainside and its sister facility, Margaretville Hospital, are members of HealthAlliance.