James M. Berklan, Editor
Executive Editor James M. Berklan

Even during the best of times, long-term care professionals may feel like they’re under siege.

After a while, it can be easy to believe the over-generalizers who claim that “all” the news is bad. The beanstalk of bad vibes can rocket skyward when you sprinkle in pandemic conditions.

But it’s not all bad news out there. If you open your eyes, hearts and browsers, you’ll see what I mean.

I have two prime examples, and as it turns out, they’re both right at your doorstep.

Take, for instance, Tuesday’s celebration of some of the best and brightest leaders in the business. I’m talking about 45 outstanding women in skilled care and senior living positions who are being honored in the 2020 McKnight’s Women of Distinction program. The virtual awards ceremony takes place from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET Tuesday. 

Believe me, this will be like nothing else you’ve seen before.

The people featured on screen will be colleagues who do the profession, never mind just their gender, proud. We should all be glad to rub elbows with them, if only virtually this year. (You can do the next best thing to actually being in their presence by checking out the ceremony — think gala TV show-like production — Tuesday. It’s better than any of your other viewing services, too: It’s free. Register here.)

Oh, and you also can earn three free CE credits if you want to attend the Women of Distinction Forum webinars the next morning. There is no gender-check to get into any of this, by the way. None.

In fact, if you’re a man in this business, you’d be a fool to think you couldn’t learn plenty from the star-studded line-up of long-term care professionals we’ve assembled for the educational webinars Wednesday morning. Register at the same link as above.

Where else can you find some good — no, great — news this week? Easy. That would be among the entrants for the 2020 McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards competition. The entrant pool should include you, by the way.

Take virtually (pun intended) any successful program you’re currently undertaking and tell us about it in the easy-to-fill-out entry form. Not that this is all about “virtual” meetings or care. Any program a provider undertakes to improve patient or resident care is eligible — and it can take place in any department in your building(s).

For more information, visit mcknightstechawards.com. You can submit an entry here. (By popular demand, we just expanded the entry window a week, until July 31.)

Pandemic conditions have been awful in so many ways, but, ironically, they also have opened a door to showcase some of your best work and brightest workers. This has to be one of the easiest years to point out something worthy of recognition.

In the end, if you don’t enter, no sweat. You can gather inspiration, and more than a few pointers, from the winners. And that goes for both of the programs mentioned above.

Now that’s really good news.

The McKnight’s Women of Distinction program is jointly administered by McKnight’s Senior Living and McKnight’s Long-Term Care News. The program’s Diamond sponsor is PointClickCare. Silver sponsors are OnShift and PharMerica, and the Signature sponsors are Acadia Pharmaceuticals and Enquire.

The McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards program is a joint presentation of McKnight’s Long-Term Care News and McKnight’s Senior Living. Stanley Healthcare is the Platinum sponsor. MatrixCare is the Gold sponsor for the senior living track.