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Water Cooler Chat with Bradenton Health Care, A Local Skilled Nursing Facility

In this installment of Water Cooler Chat, we talk with the members of the Bradenton Health Care team:

Alejandro Leon, Executive Director

Paul Martinet, Director of Rehab (Genesis Rehabilitation)

Benjimen Weidman, Social Services Director

Bradenton Health Care is a skilled nursing facility in Bradenton, FL and is located at 6305 Cortez Rd W, Bradenton, FL 34210. This facility has been able to maintain a 5-star rating throughout the pandemic, which is a major accomplishment. Bradenton Health Care is very proud of its culture that creates a community where staff cares for patients and residents like family.

In this chat, our Community Liaison, Daphne Cardona, discusses with Bradenton Health Care some of their challenges and accomplishments, the excellent therapy that they provide, and their company culture and core values. To learn more about Bradenton Health Care, please visit them online at

Thank you, Bradenton Health Care, for sharing your time with us!

Daphne: So we're Home Helpers here doing our Water Cooler Chat. I'm Daphne and I'm here at Bradenton Health Care with Alejandro Leon, the Executive Director…and we've got Paul Martinet with Genesis Rehab...he's the Director of Rehab.... and Benjimen Weidman, he is the Social Services Director.

So welcome everyone and we're going to start off with Alejandro. Tell us a little bit about your challenges here at Bradenton Health Care. Also, we'd like to know some of your accomplishments and goals for the future.

Alejandro: Well, to tell you a little bit about our building, we are a 105-bed facility. Approximately half of it is long-term care and the other half is short-term. Our long-term care does include our memory care unit. It is composed of 18 beds. At this time it's only females. We do have some openings right now. We offer services like physical therapy, occupational, speech, skilled nursing, wound care. We're able to take care of trach patients, dialysis.

Some of the challenges, definitely COVID like everyone. COVD-19 was really hard last year. We're rebuilding our census in the building again. Staffing definitely is a challenge as well. But it's also an accomplishment because it is very rare to find a facility that does not use agency staffing and we're one of those who do not use agency staffing…and with that of course we're able to provide that continuity of care by having our own staff.

Some of the other accomplishments would be we have been able to maintain a five-star rating. That takes into consideration quality measures, health inspections, and staffing as well.

Daphne: That's pretty amazing actually.

Alejandro: It is hard to keep it up. Every quarter it changes so it definitely takes a lot of work.

The goals that I have for us is to continue building. Of course, keep providing quality for our patients and being able to advocate for residents and be a support in the community.

Daphne: These are all very important things, Alejandro.

Well, based on those services that you mentioned, which one would you say has the most impact on our community?

Alejandro: It's really hard just to pick one of them. It really depends on the need of those families out there. Some of them require memory care. It is hard taking care of loved ones that have dementia…or wound care. But I would say one of the greatest outcomes that we have is therapy which is why I asked Paul (to join us). He's been with us in this building for 14 years so I'm going to have him talk a little bit about physical therapy, occupational and speech.

Paul: My name is Paul. I'm a speech pathologist. I work for Genesis Rehabilitation and we are the therapy company that provides all the therapy in Bradenton Health Care. Like Alex (Alejandro) was saying, I've been here coming up on 14 years with the building…and most of my therapists that I have working for me now have been with me for almost that amount of time too. I hired almost all of them when I first started and they are still with us. So the tenure for the therapy here is anywhere between 12 to 14 years which is really unusual in the therapy business to have the same therapist working in one facility for that long. I can't say enough about my therapy crew. I would trust them with my own parents. They do an excellent job, very conscientious and they really know their stuff. Each one of them has 20 years plus experience as a therapist. We do a great job at giving people rehabilitation in order for them to go back to the prior level of living. That's always our goal. We want people to be able to go back to their prior level if not even better sometimes. With our therapy and strengthening and techniques that we show them, we've discharged many people that actually function much better when they go home from us than they did even prior to their hospitalization.

He (Alejandro) said we do offer physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy. Therapy is offered seven days a week. We do have therapy here every day of the week. It'll depend on the physician's orders how much we give therapies, anywhere from three times a week to seven times a week depending on how aggressive the physician wants to be and depending on the insurance. Some insurance mandate a certain amount of therapy.

Recently, we have won awards for Genesis for the state of Florida for their outcome awards which means that our therapy department, which reached the highest functional outcomes of our patients as compared to when they were admitted to us as to when we discharged them home or to assisted living or to wherever the prior level was, our therapy team was able to obtain the highest level of function out of our at that time it was 112 buildings in Florida. So we were able to be the top of that and do the best for our patients to get them home at the best functioning ability that they're able to be.

I really love this building. I said it's my second home. I've been here for a long time now and I can't say enough about the therapy department and how well we get people up and moving and getting back to what they need to be doing to go home.

Daphne: Well, it sounds like you're doing top-quality work here. It's very important.

Well, Benjimen. We turn it over to you now. What can families expect when they're choosing Bradenton Health Care for whether it be short-term stay or long-extended stay, you know short-term meaning rehabilitation or forever home here?

Benjimen: Well, I think the thing that Bradenton Health Care has is that you know we're part of a larger group of facilities as well, Consulate Health Care, and there are some core values that we have. We focus on compassion, honesty, integrity, respect, and passion. So we really only look for those staff that have that drive to really care and treat the people that come here like their family. It's not unusual for you to see one of our CNAs buy one of our gentlemen a coke for lunch on a daily basis. So I think that's what families can expect…when you walk through these doors you become part of who we are. We treat you the same way we treat a family member. Even staff, we work together as a team and as a family unit, we function that way.

My personal experience here: I moved down without any connections to the area. I got this job off the internet, did a virtual interview. I jumped right in when I got here on the 12th of April and I melded right into this melting pot that we have here. We are all so diverse and all different types of people and that's exactly how we treat anybody who comes here. Every single person is an individual and every single person brings something different to our environment and to our building and it just makes it that much more fun, that much more interactive…and families can expect great communication from us. We truly want the best outcomes for everybody that comes here..and you can also expect honesty which is one of those core values.

When I sit down with families, it's about what the realistic expectations are. I'm going to tell you what the realistic expectations are and I'm going to tell you that I'm going to hope for the best as well...and we're going to meet somewhere in the middle...and that's what I love about this field and what I love about this building and this facility is that when it comes to those core values of compassion, every single person that walks through these doors has compassion and gets compassion in return. Every single person is honest with each other. You know we are human. You all make errors and we all have judgment calls. We own them, we're honest about that, but we'll work with you to resolve it and create some sort of system that fixes that. Could be having integrity, I mean who doesn't want someone to work for them and provide them the highest level of care that owns what they do. That's huge.

Daphne: ...And I think most families are looking for that authenticity from, you know, the place they choose so that's really important. Well, they also sound like very important components when choosing a place for their loved one whether it be their final home.

Daphne: Do we have any final thoughts from you, Alejandro?

Alejandro: I mean like you just said: there are components to have in mind when choosing a home. My best recommendation in choosing a place is touring the buildings and use That is the true indicator on whether they have good outcomes.

Daphne: So what's it called again?



So when you're looking for a place: That's a very good recommendation.

All right guys well thank you again for allowing us to come here and visit.

If you're looking for a great community for your loved one, whether it be short-term or long-term, consider Bradenton Health Care.

That's all for now for Water Cooler Chat. Take care.