Loretto Opens New Memory Care Unit

Loretto is opening a new memory special care unit [MSCU] Jan. 2. With the support of some grant funding, the nonprofit has invested $750,000 in renovating an entire floor of its main campus to support the unique needs of those in the most advanced stages of the disease. The new 12th floor unit will offer 30 individual rooms for long-term memory care residents.

In a statement, Loretto said the demand for dedicated memory care services in Central New York has continued to increase, far beyond what the community can currently support.

With a focus on meeting each resident’s individual needs based on the complexity of their disease, Loretto’s 12th floor will incorporate a new wholistic approach. Using an emerging Montessori care philosophy, the environment will be filled with cues and memory supports that enable individuals to care for themselves, others and their community. Staff in this unit will undergo a detailed training program to prepare the team to deliver this Montessori-based approach to specialized care.

“Our memory care programs are based on the most up-to-date, evidenced-based research. As the region’s leader in memory care, we focus on improving the well-being of individuals with Alzheimer’s and other dementing illnesses through therapeutic means and supporting them in meeting the challenges of their late-life stages,” said Loretto President and CEO Kim Townsend. “We believe that those living in our memory care unit desire a quality life and we are here to support them within their individual capacity and culture, by anticipating needs and providing comfort, autonomy, and security.”

Loretto estimates that more than a third of residents across its system have a diagnosis of dementia and that number is expected to increase. Currently, 410,000 people aged 65 and older are living with Alzheimer’s in New York today, and that number is expected to grow by close to 15% by 2025. Additionally, Loretto recently completed a comprehensive needs assessment of CNY’s aging population and created an action plan to address unmet needs, which led to the expansion of Loretto’s dedicated memory care space to meet this increased demand for dementia services.