Ask the care expert

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Sherrie Dornberger, RNC, CDONA, FACDONA, executive director, NADONA
Sherrie Dornberger, RNC, CDONA, FACDONA, executive director, NADONA
Do you know any way that we could allow families to send e-mails or pictures to our residents to make them feel better since many don't have the use of a computer in their rooms?

Actually, I just heard of a product that I think will solve your problem. I think this would be wonderful for all facilities. It is called “Presto.” It is a printer that is made by a well-known manufacturer.

It can be kept at the nurses station, family lounge, activities office or room—wherever is the best location for the residents. The subscription fee is about $10 per month (per unit) to enable everyone to receive e-mails from their loved ones.

With this service, your facility would give an email address such as Residentroom301@presto.com to enable easy delivery. Five times per day (if the green light is on, signifying there is mail waiting) someone could press the button, and all the mail that is waiting would print out. It could be e-mails, pictures, recipes or basically anything that you could print out on your printer at home.

Of course, you would not want to have confidential items sent or printed here, as you could not keep it confidential with so many individuals receiving mail from one printer. Residents who have loved ones far away and no computer in their room would be able to get pictures of new grandchildren, great-grandchildren and pictures of various family activities.

How nice it would be to be able to provide another service that will make a big difference in someone's life! This could help defray depression and anxiety.

Please know I am not paid by this company in any way. The minute I saw this on TV, I investigated it, just to tell my colleagues about it. I am sure if you do a search on the Web or go to your local electronic/computer store, you can find out more about this product.

If you get it, be sure to write a policy regarding its use and then abide by it.
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