We're looking forward to convening our LSA network during the Annual Conference, April 20-23 to enjoy fellowship, renew friendships and build relationships within our Lutheran social ministry community. While at the conference, there are a variety of opportunities to connect, network and celebrate, including longer breaks to allow you more time to connect; networking meals; multiple social events and multiple gatherings for our communities of practice and working groups. This year, we've also added a tour on Thursday afternoon for those who wish to explore more of San Antonio's rich history.
Extend your Annual Conference experience for an afternoon and explore the picturesque San Antonio Missions and Market Square shops for traditional Mexican handicrafts. The San Antonio area is renowned for its natural and cultural history. In addition to the Alamo, there are multiple historic missions that provide an opportunity to explore the heritage of our nation’s Spanish Colonial past and the lives of the mission communities and the indigenous people who inhabited the area.
The Post-Acute Care working group was established in response to the unprecedented changes underway affecting senior services. The implementation of the Affordable Care Act, technological innovations, changing reimbursement methods, changing relationships with hospitals, new partnerships, and new emerging players in the industry are causing dramatic changes in payment models and care models for post-acute care providers. Formed earlier this year, the working group brings members providing post-acute care together to identify strategies and to collectively to respond to the emerging trends in the post-acute care market.
Rebecca Young, VP, Human Resources at Allegheny Lutheran Social Ministries (ALSM), has been working with her organization to champion healthcare by refocusing on their residents and clinical outcomes. ALSM has introduced more client centered programs and services to better meet the needs of individuals residing in their facilities. They have taken on major advances in technology across their organization - from electronic medical records to employee self service - with a goal of completely digitizing their systems. Recently, ALSM has been working to distinguish the impacts of the Affordable Care Act and how it will alter current benefit plans and future offerings. ALSM continues to expand their services in an effort to provide a complete continuum of care to residents and clients that span the generations - from child day care to home healthcare and continuing care retirement communities. ALSM employs over 500 team members and serves more than 2500 clients each year.
Rev. Kathie Bender Schwich is the Senior Vice President of Mission and Spiritual Care at Advocate Health Care, an LSA member that serves three million patients annually through its healthcare system. Kathie is responsible for overseeing the Spiritual Care Services, Clinical Pastoral Education, Music Therapy, Clinical Ethics and Volunteer Services. Advocate Health Care has been a member of LSA since its inception and has been in the news lately – they've just announced their merger with NorthShore University HealthSystem. The new entity, Advocate NorthShore Health Partners, will be the largest integrated health care delivery system in Illinois and the 11th largest not-for-profit health care system in the US. Kathie is excited about the opportunities resulting from the new partnership. “Partnering with Northshore will help us provide quality care at a lower cost with higher efficiency.” she said.
Coming from a long career with Lutheran social ministry organizations, Julie Swanson, President and CEO of Lutheran Family Services of Virginia (LFSVA), has been involved in the Lutheran system since before the founding of LSA. For Julie, getting involved in the LSA network was an easy decision. "It's the other LSA member agencies, and the staff that work for them, that are your best allies and sources of information," she said in an interview with LSA this fall.
Mark Stutrud, President and CEO of Lutheran Social Services of Michigan(LSSM), is embarking on a new journey beginning October 1, 2014 as he transitions to President and CEO of Lutheran Social Services of Illinois (LSSI). Both organizations are members of LSA. During his decade of service, LSSM has grown its foundation from $3.5M to $13.5M and the organization has grown its annual budget from $73M to $109M.
How does a Lutheran organization founded in 1868 remain true to its heritage while serving the needs of its current – and future – communities? From adoption and foster care to an alternative high school … to memory care and assisted living... to meals on wheels and disaster response services … to a program that acts as a clearinghouse for corporate donations and impacts over one million people a year – Diakon Lutheran Social Ministries is evocative of the great diversity we find within the Lutheran Services in America network. At its helm is a versatile leader, Mark Pile, who just celebrated his fifth anniversary as President and CEO of the organization. Last year, he tackled the sizable challenge of splitting Diakon into two divisions, each with its own Board of Directors – one to focus on senior services, and one for child, family and community programs. Read on to learn more about Mark’s approach to leadership and how he leads by example within our network.
Congratulations to LSA members who received the Wheat Ridge Ministries Burst Grants that were offered this spring exclusively within our network!
We are all impacted on some level by the current crisis concerning unaccompanied children crossing the border in unprecedented numbers. We know that, in addition to your other responsibilities of service, you have been seeking information to decide on how to respond to this crisis.