September 2014 News
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is often a devastating diagnosis for both patients and their families. Adding youth to a TBI diagnosis and the multitude of worries grows — particularly when it comes to short- and long-term care. For TBI survivors under age 45, with the possibility of self-sufficiency with supervision, options are limited to nursing homes, which are generally designed for older populations.
Recently-completed Terry Home Auburn and the on-the-boards PROVAIL TBI Residential Facility in Shoreline are both homelike settings designed to give younger TBI survivors a non-nursing home environment to help them recover, heal and succeed. Each facility is designed as a 12 bedroom home, with common areas for cooking and eating, peer interaction and quiet pursuits, all with 24 hour support for residents from medical and therapeutic staff. Focusing project goals on home elements and away from institutional style design allows each resident a single-occupancy space (where families may visit for occasional overnights) while encouraging group interaction that aids healing. Each group home is just over 5,000 square feet in size, and are designed with long-term cost, water, and energy savings that exceed Evergreen Sustainable Development Standards. The homes have a residential feel with outdoor gathering spaces; on the interior, staff spaces allow clear lines of sight without intrusion allowing residents a feeling of freedom, yet safety, all with abundant daylight.
At Terry Home Auburn, open since fall of 2013, staff keeps a close watch on how residents progress and interact in their new home – one observation they shared recently, “People become like brothers and sisters here, laughing and squabbling, just learning to get along.” Each year in Washington 5,000 residents are hospitalized with traumatic brain injury; the need for residential facilities surpasses currently available spaces. Both Terry Home and PROVAIL keep special watch for returning military veterans, many of whom suffered TBIs while on overseas duty; each project sets aside 4 of 12 rooms on an as-needed basis for veterans.