Services Training Blog Podcast

From our Team 

Extreme Heat Safety

As we discussed in the last Isaac's Insights article, it's important to keep residents safe as temperatures increase this summer. For additional resources, please see the recent provider alert regarding tips and resources for extreme heat. 

Physical & Chemical Restraint Training

The Safety, Oversight & Quality (SOQ) Unit is hosting a training on July 12th & 20th on the topic of physical and chemical restraints. Please see the June 27th provider alert for details about how to register through Workday. 


We hope everyone had a fun and safe Fourth of July holiday weekend in celebration of the signing of America's Declaration of Independence in 1776.

Listen to this moving version of  America the Beautiful by Ray Charles with residents and staff as you enjoy any leftover barbecue from the weekend.

Ask Alyssa


“We have a resident who gets upset by our fire drills, and it affects them the rest of the day. Do we need to have this resident take part in the fire drills?”

I've been asked this question and addressed this issue several times recently, so I thought this was a timely issue to discuss.

Often, when you have a resident who is living with dementia or who has other cognitive barriers, fire drills can be quite confusing and upsetting.

The good news is that you can use a proxy, or substitute, for residents who could benefit from a substitute during fire drills.

How does this work? Well, it takes advanced planning and an understanding of the resident’s needs during the drill. You are required to have a fire evacuation plan that identifies what assistance each resident needs during drills. On your plan, note which resident will require a substitute. 

Here are some things to keep in mind when using a substitute:

Plan ahead 

It is vital to plan ahead so that you have sufficient staff during your drill when using a substitute. Be sure to have enough staff present during the drill so you have staff to conduct the fire drill, one staff member to be the substitute, and at least one staff member who can stay in the house with the resident who will not be participating. You can also plan your drills around a time you know that particular resident will be out of the house, such as at a doctor’s appointment or with family. You will use the substitute as a stand-in for that resident. 

Conduct Your Drill

The staff member who is the substitute will act as if they were the resident. You will assist the substitute exactly as you would assist the resident for whom they are the substitute. Your drills need to be as realistic as possible. You will still need to get all occupants and residents, including the proxy/substitute, to the initial point of safety within three minutes

Document & Evaluate

On the fire drill record, there is a space to note if a substitute was required, where you will check yes or no. Additionally, at the bottom of the form, you will identify which caregiver was used as a substitute for a resident.


For Multnomah County, you will also provide additional information about the process and what went well and what you could have done to improve the process and efficiency.

I encourage all providers, regardless of county, to reflect on your fire drill, evaluate your process, and work on improving efficiency. You hope to never experience a real fire, but if you do, you’ll be prepared to keep residents safe and ultimately save lives.

"America is another name for opportunity."

- Ralph Waldo Emerson (American poet, essayist, philosopher & lecturer)

Care Home Conversations Podcast


You won't want to miss our upcoming podcast episode with CEO & Co-Founder of Synkwise​, Claud Covaci, which will be airing on July 12th.

We discuss the future of recordkeeping, passion for technology, entrepreneurship, taking risks, falling in love with caregiving, problem solving, efficiency, raising the standard of care, and believing in what you do. Click here to listen to all past episodes

Ensuring Quality Care (EQC) Course

August 2022 EQC Course

There is still time to get the early-bird rate for our next EQC course through July 10th. We offer the full EQC course (EQC Essentials plus AFH Administration) and EQC Essentials only. 

Register for August EQC

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