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Directors of Adventist Care Institutions Meet to Discuss Trends in Europe

Directors of Adventist Care Institutions Meet to Discuss Trends in Europe

The directors of the Adventist care institutions in Europe met for the second conference of the “Advent Age” network in Huis ter Heide (near Utrecht), Netherlands, May 2 - 5, 2010, to discuss current trends in the care of the elderly. The participants, wh

June 01, 2010 | CD EUD/Karl-Heinz Walter

The directors of the Adventist care institutions in Europe met for the second conference of the “Advent Age” network in Huis ter Heide (near Utrecht), Netherlands, May 2 - 5, 2010, to discuss current trends in the care of the elderly. The participants, who came from Norway, the Netherlands, Denmark, Poland, France, Portugal, Switzerland, Austria, and Germany, found that they are facing many common challenges. One of which is the increasing financial pressure placed on care institutions, although this pressure may look differently in various European countries. The professionalism of the management has improved over the past few years to meet the strict requirements of the different European countries.

Some of the institutions had to have major reconstruction work done to be able to provide high-quality care facilities. Most of the institutions were originally constructed as homes for the elderly. Today, however, the focus is more on senior citizens who need intensive care. For example, Vredenoord institution, located in Huis ter Heide, was reconstructed in 2005. This friendly building demonstrates the elegance and scope of daylight design and offers specialized care for residents with dementia. The rapidly increasing number of patients with dementia requires unique specialization within the European care institutions. For example, the institutions in Uelzen and Neandertal, both located in Germany, offer specially protected areas for this group of residents.

Vredenoord is located in close vicinity to the headquarters of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the Netherlands. In his opening address, Wim Altink, president of the Adventist Church in the Netherlands, pointed out that social work and Christian faith go hand in hand. “We will be recognized as Christians by loving our neighbors,” he stated. Vredenoord has a very good reputation in the neighborhood. The Seventh-day Adventist church is well known in the Netherlands and appreciated for its social activities.

Adventists have a long tradition in health care. A large number of hospitals, sanitariums, and care institutions have been built worldwide. The church’s latest worldwide statistics, obtained in 2008, indicate 129 retirement and nursing homes with a total of 10,490 beds and 7,535 employees and 171 hospitals and sanitariums with a total of 22,216 beds and 95,043 employees.

“Advent Age” network is a European network based on the health care principles of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. It supports directors of retirement homes in their endeavors to offer top quality health care and lifestyle, considering the needs and wishes of senior citizens. The network also promotes all efforts aimed toward optimizing services for the elderly within the Seventh-day Adventist Church and throughout our whole society.

Conference participants.

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