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Older Adult Behavioral Medicine Center

Older Adult Behavioral Medicine Center

The Older Adult Behavioral Medicine Center (OABMC) at Sacred Heart Hospital is a 28-bed unit committed to treating adults 55 years of age or older adults with behavioral health conditions. The OABMC patient care team works with patients to maintain or improve their cognitive skills and physical health, encourages patients to reach their full potential, and helps patients develop social skills and self-esteem.

The OABMC patient care team offers patients:

  • medical consultations and 24-hour skilled nursing care
  • individual care plans to alleviate treatable psychiatric conditions and manage progressive problems
  • neurological evaluations, EEGs, CT scans, and MRIs when appropriate
  • dietary consultations and education
  • discharge planning with each patient and his/her family, including community placement in the most
  • positive and least restrictive long-term setting
  • education about disease process and symptom management
  • educational programs available in the community

Skilled psychiatric and mental health professionals are trained to assist patients in their self-discovery, learning, and recovery process through activities such as:

  • Individual, Group, and Family Therapy
  • Daily Community Meeting
    • While admitted to the OABMC, patients attend a daily community meeting run by a mental health technician. The technician reviews the rules and expectations of the unit as well as the different goals the patient as set for the day. The technician assists the patient in setting goals.
  • Nursing Education Groups
    • During nursing education groups, patients and families learn about any medications patients are tasking as well as side effects.
    • Nursing group also focuses on topics such as nutrition, coping skills, and symptom management.
  • Social Work Groups
    • In social work groups, patients learn about anger management, coping skills and how to interact successfully with others.
  • Art/Music/Spirituality/Recreational Therapy
    • Patients may participate in a variety of therapeutic activities to communicate their feelings through different forms of expression.
  • Occupational Therapy
    • If appropriate, patients will receive occupational therapy to help them once again perform daily living tasks.

Admission Criteria
To be admitted to the OABMC, patients must fit the following criteria:

  • Must be 55 years of age or older.
  • Must be screened for admission by a crisis intervention specialist and psychiatrist.
  • Must receive a primary psychiatric diagnosis requiring acute inpatient treatment.
  • Must be able to participate in unit activities and will benefit from a therapeutic setting and treatment program.
  • Must be medically cleared before admission.
  • If patient has acute medical illnesses which require intensive inpatient care, those illnesses must be treated on a medical unit prior to admission to the OABMC.

OABMC Visitor Guidelines
The OABMC is dedicated to maintaining the safety for patients and visitors at all times. For everyone’s safety, we request only two visitors for each patient at any time. Upon entrance to the unit, you will be asked to visit the nurse’s station. At this time, you will need to sign in and the unit staff will check any belongings you have brought for the patient. Visitors will not be permitted to bring personal bags or backpacks onto the unit. Purses will be subject to search.

Some visitor guidelines:

  • Food/Beverages
    • Due to limited space, we are unable to store food brought in from home/outside. If you bring food for a patient when you visit, please take any leftovers home when you leave. Only one serving of food from home/outside is permissible, and ordering out is prohibited.
  • Clothing
    • Clothing with strings or ties is prohibited. Please be aware that due to the short length of stay, only three days of clean clothing are necessary. A washer and dryer are available for use in the unit for patients without family resources. Families are encouraged to launder clothing.
  • Prohibited Items
    • To provide and maintain safety on the inpatient psychiatric units, the following items are not allowed to be brought onto the unit at any time. These items include but are not limited to:
    • balloons, spiral notebooks, barrettes, bobby pins, and panty hose
    • alcohol or street drugs
    • cigarettes, matches, or lighters
    • knives, box cutters, scissors, tools, belts, shoelaces or any item which could be used as a potential weapon
    • metal picture frames or frames with glass inserts
    • cell phones, computers, radios, or large amounts of money
    • jewelry (with or without stones) and piercing jewelry
    • Only wedding bands and watches are allowed to stay with the patient.

Nursing Staff Rights
The nursing staff has the right to limit or refuse any visitation if a visitor appears intoxicated or is showing signs of drug use. If necessary, staff can and will terminate any visit if the safety of the unit is in question.

Visiting Hours
Monday – Friday: 1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Weekends and holidays 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Phone Calls
Patient can be called between 8:00 a.m. - 9:30 p.m. No calls will be accepted during unit activities and programming. Phones are turned off during these times.

  • Patient phone numbers: 610-663-3120 or 610-663-3121
  • Please limit phone conversations to 10 minutes per call.
Sacred Heart HealthCare System | 421 Chew Street | Allentown, PA | 18102 | 610-776-4500 | Copyright 2019 - All Rights Reserved
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