Year: 2018

Job Fairs – Seeking PCWs

Job Fairs at R.K. Macdonald Nursing Home on November 7th and 10th, 2018.

Seeking PCWs who are wanting to work to become certified CCAs.

R.K. Macdonald Nursing Home - Job Fair

We are looking for people who:

Have an interest in being a caregiver Do not have a CCA certification but have been working in the role of Personal Care Worker; Personal Support Worker or Home Support Worker. Are a graduate from a related Health and Human Services Programs such as: Social and Community Support; Social Services; Community Residential Worker; Human Services Worker; and are interested in obtaining their certification as a Continuing Care Assistant.

Apply now online or join us at our Job Fairs on November 7th from 6:30-8:00 pm or on November 10th from 10 a.m. to noon at 64 Pleasant Street, Antigonish, NS.

Care Services Administrative Assistant

POSITION: Care Services Administrative Assistant
DEPARTMENT: Nursing/Environmental/ Food Services (Payroll Purpose “Nursing Dept.)
RESPONSIBLE TO: Directors of Clinical & Environmental & Food Services

The Office Administrative Assistant provides clerical support primarily to the Director and Assistant of Clinical Services, and Director of Environmental & Food Services and at times may be called upon for assistance by other members of the Senior Leadership team for support. In keeping with our Mission, Vision and Values and our philosophy of Resident Centered Care, the Office Administrative Assistant serves as a positive role model; as a partner in the provision of care and support of our residents, and represents the home in a positive, professional, efficient and confidential manner.

This position requires excellence in office and organizational skills (both analytical and problem solving) to ensure the efficiency of the office and an ability to maintain absolute confidentiality, sound judgment, and professionalism when dealing with sensitive issues associated with the day-day operations of this Long Term Care Home.

Key Responsibilities

1. Administrative and Clerical Support

  • Communicates with assigned Senior Leaders as required to coordinate and prioritize tasks or assignments, to meet deadlines, and to plan future administrative support needs.
  • Keeps assigned Leaders up to date on changes/ things that affect their departments and anticipates and plans for upcoming events.
  • Schedules appointments, books meetings/& rooms, catering, and other events as needed or anticipates by utilizing Microsoft outlook or other processes in place.
  • Prepares, modifies and inputs data in various documents using Microsoft office, including: memos, letters, minutes, agendas, forms, spread sheets, etc.
  • Prepares meeting materials.
  • Assists with the procurement and purchasing of supplies and equipment for the Nursing and Environmental and Food Services Departments following purchasing protocol with necessary quotes and approval of funds.
  • Coordinates Registration and Travel arrangements upon request.
  • Run errands as needed.
  • Maintains electronic and hard copy filing systems and follows policy when it comes to shredding and storage of files.
  • Provides general administrative clerical support including copying, scanning, faxing, mailing, revisions, and distributing documents.
  • Reviews outgoing material for completeness, dates and signatures.
  • Track departmental forms such as purchase orders, supply requisitions.
  • Perform assigned responsibilities, duties, and tasks according to established practices, procedures, techniques, and standards in a safe manner and with minimal supervision.
  • Supports the Front Administrative Office in the absence of the Executive Administrative Assistant in assuming general day to day functions such as: answering the Home Business phone, directing visitors, CARE VAN and requests and drivers, copying, supplies, keys, and other administrative tasks that are necessary prior to the return of EAA.
  • Provides passwords for WIFI to staff.
  • Performs other duties as required.

2.Environment/Dietary Support

  • Inputs approved scheduling requests, prepares, prints and circulates the monthly schedules approved by the Director.
  • Inputs bi-weekly scheduling changes, runs verification reports and once signed & approved by Director, forwards report to Finance for processing.
  • In conjunction with either the Director, Dietitian or cooks assists in placing weekly food supply orders via online or phone.

3. Nursing Support

  • Coordinates new Admission Care Conferences with family and care team.
  • Coordinates & labels Blood Requisitions in the Ward clerks.
  • Notifies Placement Office (DOHW) of vacant resident bed and distributes potential new admission packages to Director or Designate.
  • Schedules and notifies resident/family and all care partners for semi-annual multi-disciplinary care conferences.
  • In the absence of Nursing Scheduler or Ward Clerk inputs biweekly changes in Dept. schedules and runs verification reports for payroll with signed approval from Director of Clinical Services or designate.
  • CQI data entry i.e. event reports, falls, SERT team report.
  • Coordinates Student Clinical placements.
  • Coordinates Med Reviews (bi annually).
  • Maintains Wandering Guard Program i.e. ordering supplies, updates list.
  • Coordinates and processes funding requests for Residents with DOHW (i.e. custodial or special needs).
  • Coordinates Annual Influenza Immunizations for residents and staff with Supervising RN.

4.Internal/external committee participation

  • Occupational Health and Safety (JOSH)
  • Resident Council
  • Participates on other committees as required
  • Supports resident care as time permits, i.e. sitting with resident, escorting them to activities, etc.

Skills and Competencies

  • Proven capacity to manage sensitive information with the highest degree of integrity, professionalism and confidentiality.
  • Demonstrated exemplary interpersonal and communication (verbal, written) skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to clearly write, speak and interact professionally required.
  • Demonstrated ability to work with all levels of Management and Staff, Residents, and families and have good interaction with Business and Community relations.
  • Demonstrated competence to work with minimal supervision.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in composing professional communications, i.e., letters, emails, memos for internal or external use.
  • Demonstrated expertise in the MS Office suite of programs, i.e. Word, Data Base management, Presentation, Outlook (email) and internet
  • Confirmed excellence in ability to prioritize projects and work and manage the unexpected.
  • Proven effective and efficient organizational abilities, using self-direction and sound judgement to prioritize workload and to coordinate multiple and competing task demands and deadlines.
  • Demonstrated proficiency to work in a fast paced environment with strong attention to detail.
  • Ability to deal with internal and external customers in a tactful and courteous manner.
  • Ability to devise or adopt office procedures to changing organizational needs.
  • Ability to organize and coordinate functions and tasks, with frequent interruptions.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships internally and externally.
  • Well-organized and self-directed.
  • Ability both to take initiative and follow-through.

Educational Qualifications

  • Graduate from a recognized Administrative Assistant/Office Administration Program.

Experience Required

  • Experience in a health care setting preferred

Approved by: CEO for/Director of Clinical & Environmental & Food Services

Please note:  This is not a job listing, this is a job description. For current opportunities click here.

Pelly Sisters Combined for 125 years of Service

We would like to thank The Casket for covering the story on the Pelly Sisters. The trio has worked, combined, almost 125 years at the Antigonish facility. “We were only babies when we came,” Vicky said, with a laugh.

RK MacDonald Nursing Home - Pelley Sisters By The Casket

It is a family affair for the Pelly sisters, when it comes to working at the R.K. MacDonald Nursing Home in Antigonish. – Corey LeBlanc The Casket

She is the newcomer, when it comes to service time, having 37 years under her belt, while Eva has 44. Kandy retired last year after 43 years working in the R.K. kitchen.

“It is nice when the residents know your name,” Eva said, when asked about favourite parts of her job.

“There is a different challenge every day,” Vicky said.

She added there have been “a lot of changes,” since she started working there.

“I was scared to death,” Eva, with a laugh, said of her first day on the job, noting she had never worked with seniors.

To read all of this story from The Casket, click here.

60th Anniversary at RK MacDonald

We would like to thank The Casket for covering our 60th Anniversary Celebration held on Wednesday, October 3rd, 2018.

RK Macdonald - Corey LeBlanc Photo of Michelle & Lynn

Resident Lynn Mersereau visits with Michelle Thompson, R. K. MacDonald Nursing Home CEO, Wednesday afternoon (Oct. 3) during an open house celebrating the 60th anniversary of the facility. Corey LeBlanc The Casket

“Let the trumpet sound – rejoice and be glad – for the spirit of celebration resounds, once again, in this special place, as we proclaim the 60th anniversary of the R.K. MacDonald Nursing Home.”

“That’s how Sister Brendalee Boisvert, Sisters of Saint Martha congregation leader, began her remarks during an open house celebration at the Antigonish residence Wednesday afternoon (Oct. 3).”

To read all of this story from The Casket, click here.

Voice For Care Magazine – Fall 2018

In a recent issue of Voice For Care Magazine, there was a lovely article done on the Storytelling Program:

“Most Wednesdays since earlyspring, you will find a dedicated group of Residents and support people gathered in the Rhubarb Patch, engaged in a lively afternoon of story writing, laughter and comradery. The storytelling program is a collaboration with R.K. MacDonald Nursing Home and Arts Health Antigonish (AHA!). “The RK MacDonald Nursing Home: Art & Darlene

You can read the full magazine click here.

Buddy Bench at RK

We are very pleased to reproduce the below excerpt of an article by Sam Macdonald of The Casket published on August 14th.

‘A little sanctuary’: Antigonish Community Comes Together to Create Buddy Bench at RK MacDonald Nursing Home

Kim Cameron-MacDonald (upper left), Francis Grenier, Emma MacDonald, Mary Grace, Mary Partridge, Diane Delorey (bottom left), Donna MacLean, Mary Margaret Grace and Sadie Boyd – all enjoying the fine weather with the Buddy Bench – the newest addition to the garden area of the RK MacDonald Nursing Home. – Sam Macdonald

A new, colourful addition adorns the garden area of the RK MacDonald nursing home.

The bench is hard to miss. The bright yellow bench is decorated in the rainbow-coloured handprints of several generations of people and is the product of a partnership between members of Antigonight: Art After Dark Festival, staff and residents of RK MacDonald and youth from the local Montessori School.

“It took a lot of priming and painting to get that beautiful yellow that is there now,” Emma MacDonald, festival director for Antigonight, said, describing how the handprints belong to several generations of Antigonishers.

“We also wanted to use a lot of bright, primary colours for the handprints. We wanted to incorporate an inter-generational piece to this community art project.”

You can read the rest of  the article on The Casket’s website here.

Transforming Attitudes

In a recent post on Safety Matters, the blog for the Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia, talked about the simple yet surprising math behind the daily routines of staff at the RK MacDonald.

240 staff, 136 residents, several cats, quite a few birds, and a visiting dog program come together to make up the rich and vibrant community of R. K. MacDonald Nursing Home, fondly known as the RK.

So what’s the biggest safety challenge in this large home that recognizes and appreciates the uniqueness of every person who lives and works there? Essentially, it’s a math challenge!

1. How many residents are in your facility?
2. How many residents in your facility use a mechanical lift (ceiling/hoyer)?
3. Multiply the answer from question #2 by 4 (assumes 4 lifts per day).
4. Multiply the answer from question #3 by 7 (days per week).
5. Multiply the answer from question #4 by 52 (weeks per year).

The answer from question #5 is how many estimated lifts are happening with your staff every year.

At a recent Keeping PACE symposium, Terry MacIntyre, the RK’s Director of Clinical Services, challenged the audience to try the math at their respective homes, because what the math told the RK was that over 150,000 lifts are happening annually.


You can read the entire article on Safety First, the Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia’s website.

A Commitment to Safety

The RK MacDonald Nursing Home was recognized for a commitment to safety by the Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia CEO Stuart MacLean this past May.

Picture courtesy of the Workers' Compensation Board of Nova Scotia

Picture courtesy of the Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia

In one year, RK MacDonald Nursing Home was able to combat high costs and commit to safety. WCB Nova Scotia recognized the Antigonish facility for its achievement  on May 30. WCB Nova Scotia CEO Stuart MacLean congratulated the organization for their achievements in engaging staff and creating a culture of safety.

“RK MacDonald is putting safety first for everyone,” said MacLean, “residents, employees and visitors alike.”

MacLean also recognized the work of tireless safety champions like Terry MacIntyre, whose career as a physiotherapist solidified the importance of safety for him.

“I’ve seen too many workplace injuries that have had significant physical and emotional consequences and a lot of these could have been prevented,” said MacIntyre.

When RK MacDonald began working with WCB in 2014, they had high claims and high costs.  Though claims for 2014-2015 remained at a steady number, they were able to reduce their costs by more than $250,000.  So far in 2016,  they have only one registered claim and no time-loss claims.


You can read the entire article at Safety Matters, the blog on workplace safety over at


Accreditation Helps The RK Establish Clear Path Forward

Accreditation provides a solid foundation to build new quality improvement initiatives upon, long-term care CEO says. Accreditation provides a solid foundation to build new quality improvement initiatives upon, long-term care CEO says.

Michelle Thompson, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the RK MacDonald Nursing Home in Antigonish, N.S., says that Accreditation Canada (AC)’s long-term care standards are helping to shape initiatives the organization will be putting into place in the near future.

“I wouldn’t put any new initiatives in place without first consulting the standards,” Thompson says. “A new program should be based on the standards, so that it can be measured and we can ensure that it’s improving quality services and safe care.”

Thompson notes that the RK MacDonald Nursing Home underwent AC’s Primer accreditation survey from Dec. 4-6, 2017.

“It’s knowing that we’re aligned with best practices and that we have a guideline to go back to whenever we are implementing a new program,” she says.

Thompson adds that oftentimes, long-term care facilities work to adapt acute care resources to their specific sector.

“But once you go through Accreditation Canada’s program, you have access to long-term care standards,” she says. “You’re able to access resources that are pertinent to your sector.”

Thompson said AC’s Primer program was a positive experience as surveyors highlighted not only areas where the nursing home could improve, but also areas where it is excelling. She noted that surveyors highlighted efforts the nursing home was making in Person-Centred Care.

From Accreditation Canada, Accreditation Helps RK MacDonald Home Establish Clear Path Forward, published on Jan 04, 2018. The full article can be found on Accreditation Canada’s website here.