Editor’s Note: The 2019 winners of the McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards are being announced Oct. 4 to 11. Senior Living track winners are being announced here by McKnight’s Senior Living. Skilled Care track winners are being announced on the website and newsletter of sister publication McKnight’s Long-Term Care News.

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A Hunters Woods at Trails Edge resident uses the access control system.

Hunters Woods at Trails Edge, a state-of-the-art senior community in Reston, VA, elevated its resident safety system to a new level. For this reason, it received the top prize in the Safety category of the Senior Living track in the 2019 McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards.

The community, which sits on 300,000 square feet and features four levels of care, was in need of safety improvements, according to Rick Irwin, CEO of IntegraCare Corp., which owns Hunters Woods. Seeking assistance from Direct Supply Aptura and Atlantic Realty, it developed several innovative security features. Among them: hardwired access control with keyless entry on all 210 resident room doors, which limits a resident to only entering his or her room and removes the risks involved with conventional keyed locks.

Another new safety feature is the power-assist door opener option for resident room doors. The option helps reduce the risk of falls by making it easier for residents with mobility issues to enter their rooms. Instead of scanning a fob, pushing a lever and opening the door, a resident can use a push-button remote to unlock the door and open it.

The integration of various safety systems sets this solution apart, Irwin said. Wireless nurse call is integrated with the hardwired access control and also integrates with the advanced wander management system. The fire detection and alarm system also is integrated with the electronic locking hardware and wireless nurse call system.

“It’s the integration of access control, wander management, nurse call, fire protection and security and phone systems, all working together to increase efficiency but also reduce burdens on the staff,” he told McKnight’s Senior Living.

Other Safety award winners in the Senior Living track:

2019 McKnight's Tech Awards logo
  • Silver: The Village at Gainesville, of Gainesville, FL, for creating a “smart” model apartment that is outfitted with smart switches, plugs, Wi-Fi thermostat (the Nest) and an Amazon Echo. The Alexa virtual assistant also is integrated with the resident community engagement solution, Touchtown, which allows residents to access daily activities and menus and ask common questions.
  • Bronze: United Methodist Communities, of Neptune, NJ, for implementing the Accushield Visitor Management System in all its full-service communities and one affordable housing community. The system replaces the paper sign-in logs at entrances and instead uses a touchscreen sticker-badge printing tablet. The result is the ability to better track and identify visitors.

Entries for the competition were submitted earlier this year and judged by an independent panel of senior living and skilled care experts.

Stanley Healthcare is the Platinum Sponsor of the 2019 McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards. MatrixCare is the Gold Sponsor of the Senior Living track.