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Case manager stands ready to assist

Brianna Augustine[/caption]

The cold winter months can be difficult for some seniors, and it’s not unusual to see hospital stays rise during this time of year.

Fortunately, Brianna Augustine is ready to help people transition into our PATH® rehab program and, whenever possible, back home again.

Brianna is the nurse case manager for PATH (Post-Acute to Home), a short-term rehabilitation program at Salina Presbyterian Manor designed to help people bridge the gap between a hospital stay and return to full function at home. She determines if there is room in the program for new patients, works with the hospital and family with admission to PATH, and then oversees each case through weekly meetings.

“Things change a lot with people in rehab, and we want everyone to be on the same page,” Brianna said.

Brianna has served as case manager  for three years. She was a team leader on our health care nursing staff for about a year before that.

Before moving to Salina, Brianna had been a nurse at the state penitentiary in Hutchinson. “It was not for me. I made it a year; that was my goal,” she said.

It was good news when her then- boyfriend (now husband) got a job with the Salina Fire Department. The couple moved to Salina, and Brianna was happy to find a position at Presbyterian Manor.

When she got promoted, it was a big change to go from direct patient care to managing care plans and keeping up with Medicare regulations. Brianna admits she was nervous about the responsibility at first. Now, she likes seeing residents meet their goals and return to the level of activity they had before their injury, illness or surgery.

As Brianna sees it, one of the greatest benefits of PATH is the focus on patient-centered care. Recently one patient on the verge of going home told Brianna and the rest of the team just how grateful she was for their help during her month in rehab.

“She couldn’t stop saying how thankful she was,” Brianna said. “She wanted to go home, but she was nervous. She said she was going to come back and visit us.”

The PATH model also supports people in the psychological part of recovery, she said. They can deal with setbacks and frustration better when they have someone to talk to.

Away from work, Brianna and her husband stay busy with their children – two boys, ages 7 and 9, and a 6-month-old girl.

Marketing Director Jenni Jones praised Brianna for the joy she brings to her job. “She and I work closely together, and I couldn’t do my job without her,” Jenni said. “I am blessed to have her as a teammate.”

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