The Story of a Medical Emergency Leads to Warm Welcomes and Piano Melodies

Katherine Mihaliak welcomes visitors to the McLean Health Center while her granddaughter Lorraine serenades the residents on the piano.After a trip to Florida, Katherine Mihaliak’s COPD flared up putting her in the hospital. They recommended she rehab at the McLean Post Acute Center in Simsbury that has the Breathe Easy COPD program. She grew healthier in the Rehab Center then went home and continued the Breathe Easy Program with McLean Home Care. This was last winter. Now she is strong, bragging about being a good 85, and managing her chronic illness with the lessons she learned from the Breathe Easy Program team.

While she was a patient at McLean, she learned that she could give back by volunteering there. Weekly Katherine volunteers as an Ambassador greeting visitors to the McLean Health Center. An added bonus is that she comes from Avon with her sixteen year old granddaughter, Lorraine Mihaliak, who has studied piano for eight years. While Katherine is offering visitors directions and assistance, they are treated to a rich variety of music Lorraine plays for the residents.

Katherine Mihaliak welcomes visitors to the McLean Health Center while her granddaughter Lorraine serenades the residents on the piano.

A Miniature Garden Enthralls McLean Home Residents

Sappho Petrowski points out the gnome in her miniature gardens she created at McLean

Sappho Petrowski had a large doll house built in the 1920s as an adult. She made all of the furniture and furnishings. Before she moved to McLean a year ago, she ordered a kit to make a greenhouse. Just because she now lives in the McLean Home, she didn’t want to stop making miniature worlds. Once she moved in, she began to order bunches of delicate little flowers. Sappho then made many tiny arrangements and pots of flowers creating a delightful garden experience.

McLean Home Care Goes High Tech Helping Physicians

In today’s world, physicians and medical personnel rely more and more on technology to look up and sort through vast amounts of information. McLean Home Care & Hospice is working closely with physicians to help them identify patients with serious chronic illnesses who may be eligible for palliative care programs through home care or hospice services.

McLean developed apps for physicians and medical office teams to download on their mobile devices with the guidelines to identify palliative home care and hospice patients. Dr. Kevin Baran, McLean Hospice Medical Director, thinks these apps will be very helpful to the professionals and allow them to refer patients earlier for effective management of their illnesses. This includes expert management of pain and other symptoms to achieve comfort, close communication and coordination of care with patient’s physicians, illness-specific education and/or consultation for patients and caregivers, guidance with difficult and complex treatment choices, and so much more.

McLean Special Caregiver Educational Lectures Start Sept. 4th and run through Nov.

The Information You Need for the Care They Deserve

McLean invites you to a series of lectures designed to help caregivers better understand how Alzheimer’s and dementia impact their loved one’s needs, and offer support for those facing the challenges of caregiving.

The lectures are free will be held at the McLean Health Center, 75 Great Pond Road, Simsbury, except for the very special lecture - “If It’s Not Alzheimer’s, What Is It? Understanding Various Forms of Dementia and Other Factors That May Cause Memory Loss” • Thursday, October 24, 6:00 p.m. to be held at Hop Meadow Country Club.

McLean will provide a simple supper and an activity for loved ones, so the caregivers can be free of caregiver responsibility.

To RSVP, call 860-658-3786 or click here for more details on the workshops and to RSVP. 

Retirement Living Luncheon Lectures Start Sept. 9th

Presented by The Village at McLean

A FREE lecture series to help you plan for the retirement lifestyle you’ve always dreamed of is being presented by The Village at McLean.

Come enjoy a light lunch and meet our residents.  

The lectures will be held on Mondays,

12:45–2:30 PM

at The Village at McLean, Burkholder Community Center,

100 Sarah Lane, Simsbury, CT.

Please register by calling 860-658-3786 or click for details and RSVP form.

McLean Butterfly Garden in Full Bloom

ThanksMcLean gardens to the generosity of The Hartford, McLean is blessed with a large butterfly garden.  This year it is particularly lovely, report the residents. 

McLean wishes to thank the members of the Village, lead by Nancy Mixter and John and Jean Sziklas, who lovingly and tirelessly tend the garden for everyone’s enjoyment.

McLean village gardeners

Long Standing Tradition of Monday Morning Men’s Coffee at McLean

Long Standing Tradition of Monday Morning Men’s Coffee at McLean Who knew that Brigitte Bardot was an animal rights activist? This brought a great chuckle to the McLean Monday Men’s Coffee group as they pondered answers to brain teasers on Famous Do Gooders. It was the only puzzler that someone in the group didn’t answer very quickly.

Almost from the very inception of the McLean Home in 1971, men from the community and the McLean campus have gathered every Monday to chat about current events, topics of special interest, and generally just have a good time together. Calvin Fisher, a well know Simsbury resident, historian and author, lead the group for many years. After Calvin passed away, various members of the community lead the group. Most recently The Village at McLean members Frank Schooley and Walter Collins facilitated the conversation. Recently, they decided it was time for a new leader. Dane Woodberry from Simsbury offered his time and talent. Dane even has name tag tents he made for the participants, but many have known each other for years.

McLean Outpatient Therapy in New Location on Campus

The McLean Outpatient Rehab Team celebrates the opening of their new clinic in the Wellness Center on the McLean campus, 75 Great Pond Rd., Simsbury.We are pleased to announce the Outpatient Rehab Clinic has moved to the McLean Healthy Living Wellness Center. Barbara Evans, MSPT, Outpatient Rehab Supervisor, reports “The Clinic is open and serving patients.

Advice from a family on visiting nursing homes

May family visits in the McLean gardens.     I’m often asked by families how to assess nursing homes for their loved one. Peter and Rebecca May offered to share their experience. They have been the caregivers for Peter’s mother for several years. She has lived in assisted living centers and two nursing homes. She is currently a resident at the McLean Home. When I asked Rebecca about their choice, she began to explain her mother-in-law’s first day. “The day she moved in, the dining staff made sure the other folks were to her right at her table so she could hear them.” That seems like a simple thing, but she told me it was never thought about in other places. “They also routinely do her nails and her hair.” Mrs. May held out her hands showing off the pretty light pink polish telling me that pink is her favorite color. Rebecca said that she had to care for Mrs. May’s nails and often her hair when she visited her in other places. Rebecca said this can be summed up in one word, “dignity.” It is easy to look at residents in homes and see if their nails are groomed, the ladies have jewelry on, and the men’s outfits fit and are fresh. I have heard from families that when they visit a parent in some assisted living and skilled nursing facilities they never know what they will be wearing and often they are not their own clothes. In person-centered organizations with consistent staff assignments, this attention to each person’s needs and wishes becomes possible.

McLean Auxiliary Art Galley Hosts Woodcraft Show

Pierre Bastien art exhibit in the McLean Auxiliary Gallery at the McLean Health Center.Monthly the McLean Auxiliary invites different artists to their display work in the art gallery in the McLean Health Center, 75 Great Pond Rd, Simsbury. Visitors, residents, and patients all enjoy the variety of mediums and subject matter. Pierre Bastien of Broad Brook is the July artist. His exhibit is wooden bowls, candle sticks and other pieces created on his lathe. Pierre loves to work with a wide variety of woods so the items are each very different and special. He seasons his own wood appreciating donations from his brother-in-law who manages the Quabbin Resevoir. McLean Home resident, Pam Yost, is an artist herself. She delighted in the many types of woods and patterns of Pierre’s pieces.


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