Pacifica Senior Living is proud to announce that our Heritage Hills community in North Carolina is one of the first to be granted full Accreditation from the Accreditation Commission for Health Care, in partnership with the University of North Carolina. The North Carolina Adult Care Home (Assisted Living) Accreditation Pilot Program was first launched in 2021, with the aim to “evaluat[e] the effectiveness of an accreditation process to improve care and outcomes that could inform future changes to the licensure process and requirements,” (University of North Carolina, you can read more about the accreditation pilot program here.
The pilot program is overseen by UNC, and serves the purpose of both evaluating this new accreditation process and program effectiveness, and allowing the communities that participate to strive for this highest level of excellence while learning processes, standards and procedural best practices.
Obtaining Accredited status indicates that that community has met the requirements and standards based on a diligent and thorough review. After much review, evidence, and monitoring, “accreditation indicates that assisted living communities meet standards set by the Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC), which also accredits acute care hospitals, home health agencies, hospice programs, and other organizations,” (UHN).
This Assisted Living Accreditation status is a marker of the amazing level of care, wonderful compassionate team members, and incredible higher standards that Pacifica Senior Living Heritage Hills holds in all aspects of its community.
We sat down with Executive Director Michael Ring, to ask about the process of accreditation, what this means to the community, and how he and his team are going above and beyond to offer the very best experience to all their residents and their loved ones.
Tell us about your time at Pacifica Senior Living Heritage Hills:
I was hired as the Executive Director at Heritage Hills on June 6, 2018. Since that time, my team and I have focused on the long term goal of becoming one of Pacifica Senior Living’s flagship communities through sustainable results and a commitment to excellence. Volunteering to take part in the Accreditation Pilot Program was another step towards achieving that goal.
What made you want to work in senior living?
I previously worked in the financial industry which is very impersonal. Senior Living/health care allows you to have a positive impact on people’s lives daily so I saw the change as an opportunity for personal growth.
Can you tell us a bit about the Certificate of Accreditation that your community received?
The Accreditation Commission for Health Care has partnered with the University of North Carolina for an accreditation pilot program. They accepted volunteers to participate in a two year program with the intent of studying the care variance between health care communities that meet accreditation standards and those communities that do not. The benefit to each community is the possibility of receiving accreditation.
What led you to apply for this opportunity?
I registered Heritage Hills to participate in the accreditation process primarily for the educational and training opportunity for the staff and myself. My competitive nature also compelled me to participate to learn how our community measured against the highest standards in the industry. Accreditation itself is the ultimate goal of the process and all of us at Heritage Hills are very proud to be one of the first communities in North Carolina to have achieved it.
How do you see this certificate impacting the community?
I believe that successfully navigating the accreditation process has provided our residents and their families comfort and confidence that the care delivered at Heritage Hills is exceptional and uncompromised. Accreditation has also provided a significant morale boost for the current staff as well as attracting a better pool of employee candidates for open positions.
What contribution have you made to your community that is the most meaningful?
We have built a phenomenal team of senior living professionals who are empowered, driven, and dedicated. They are never complacent with the status quo but strive for the vision of what Heritage Hills will be.
What is the most rewarding part of your role?
I really enjoy helping those who want to grow their career. Whether it be functioning as a preceptor for aspiring Executive Directors, helping a Personal Care Assistant grow into Resident Care Director or just helping someone get into senior care at an entry level so that those people can then touch the lives of others.
Congratulations to Michael Ring and the entire team at Pacifica Senior Living Heritage Hills on this monumental achievement.