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Heiterland, the name of our memory care unit, means "land of calmness, serenity and happiness."

Developed in 1994, this household was one of the first memory care units in the area.  It was established with a focus on valuing and building upon the residents past and present abilities and interests as they progress through the stages of dementia. Staff meets with the resident, their family members, and recent caregivers to learn as much as they can about the resident’s past with the goal in mind of finding their areas of interest.  Activities are developed using a more comprehensive one-on-one approach and are geared to meeting their specific needs and validating their personhood. It is our goal to maintain the social and motor skills of the resident at each stage of the disease. We believe that through specialized programming the physical, spiritual, and social needs of the Heiterland residents can be met in a calm and dignified manner as they and their families adjust to living with dementia.


The Apostolic Christian Home of Eureka believes in the importance of providing individuals  living with Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementias an opportunity to live in a safe and loving environment that allows them to achieve their highest level of function. A 20 bed Special Care Household (Heiterland) has been developed with special design aspects to achieve  this goal. Heiterland is certified as an Illinois Department of Public Health Special Care Unit. Heiterland staff receives specialized training and continuing education that allows them to walk through the various stages as care partners with the residents.

  • All CNA’s are trained to support an activity-based memory support unit

  • Dedicated Activity staff to meet the special needs of residents with dementia

  • Each staff member working in the unit must receive special training before working and then on an ongoing basis have a certain number of training hours annually

  • There is consistent staffing on the unit allowing both the residents and staff members to be very familiar with each other

  • The staff and residents truly become like a family in this unit

Special Physical Features

The following special physical features have been incorporated to meet the resident’s needs:

  • Outdoor enclosed courtyard with walking path, raised flower beds, and seating areas to encourage outdoor activities

  • Resident rooms are on the ends of the unit with the center area designed to be the focus of activity where the residents spend the bulk of the day

  • Dining area is broken into separate areas allowing for residents of similar social and feeding skills to eat together

  • Fully equipped residential-type kitchen

    • Snack items are kept in the refrigerator for residents to eat when they wish

    • The functioning stove/oven allows for supervised cooking activities

    • The sink/counter top area provides space for the residents to help with dishes if they wish

  • Interactive art on the walls are designed for the curious residents who like to feel and touch things

  • Walking pathway throughout the unit for “pacers”

Criteria for Admission to Heiterland
  • Wandering

  • Suspiciousness/Paranoia

  • Agitation

  • Tearfulness

  • Fear of being left alone

  • Sleep disturbances

  • Memory loss

  • Inappropriate rummaging

  • Inappropriate undressing

  • Verbal outbursts

  • Physical threats/violence

  • Resistance to need for guidance/assistance with Activities of Daily Living

Criteria for Discharge from Heiterland
  • Total care is needed

  • No verbal response

  • Accepts but cannot initiate interaction

  • No longer benefitting from specialized programming

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