National Skilled Nursing Care Week

By Sarah Sexton | Publish Date May 19, 2023

This week is National Skilled Nursing Care Week! According to the American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL), National Skilled Nursing Care Week was established in 1967 to celebrate the essential role that skilled nursing care centers play in providing high quality 24-hour nursing care to millions of America’s seniors and individuals with disabilities.  ​

Our Kirkwood Skilled Nursing staff prepared a full week of celebratory activities for staff and residents, including a carnival, safari, rodeo, and more.

As an industry, we have seen so many communities abandon the Skilled Nursing level of care due to staffing shortages and heavy regulations. “Over the past three years, we have seen so much change, but what hasn’t wavered is Kirkwood’s commitment to our residents,” shares Healthcare Administrator Jeff Burchfield. “We are so grateful for the caring and dedicated staff we have at Kirkwood, and we are excited to see our Skilled Nursing space transform as we complete thoughtful upgrades to our building.”

Kirkwood’s Skilled Nursing community is receiving a total renovation. Led by our partners and friends at Brasfield and Gorrie and under the care of our CEO Chad Carter, our Administrator Jeff Burchfield, and our local board of directors, what was once one floor of Skilled Nursing and Short-term Rehabilitation care has become two. Our new Riverview Rehab community is now open and features 16 private beds with private bathrooms and private, secure balconies for short-term rehab stays. We offer physical, occupational, and speech therapy in this area of our community, specializing in rehabilitation needs after hospitalization. Our existing Skilled Nursing floor is receiving a new lobby entrance, new therapy gym, new activities and dining room, and more private rooms.

“Kirkwood is well-known for the quality of care we provide but the space in Skilled Nursing hasn’t matched. We are excited to upgrade this part of our community so that residents and resident families are more comfortable,” says Marketing Director Sandi Hall. “One of the many benefits of a Life Plan Community is that you become family, and our staff is honored to care for these residents throughout their many stages of retirement. Skilled Nursing is always the hardest emotional transition – as we watch our loved ones become fully dependent – but we are so grateful to have an amazing team who is dedicated to meeting each resident where they are by providing compassion, quality care, and a lot of love.”


If you are interested in our short-term rehab services for yourself or for a loved one, we are now taking new residents in Riverview Rehab. Click here for a virtual tour of this new space.

The Residents

Our residents come from different backgrounds and bring their unique qualities, talents, and life experiences to complete the Kirkwood community. Here are just a few reflections from some individuals who call Kirkwood their home.

I fell in love with the cottage and the view from my back porch. I am excited to have a yard for Ginger, my poodle, to play in and my own garage, all within an established retirement community!

Charlotte Hamilton Current Resident

My husband and I looked at a number of places when deciding to move to a retirement community. For the most part, we found communities that said, ‘We’re going to take care of you.’ But Kirkwood was different. It wasn’t just about taking care of us. It was also about having fun, having friends, and living life to the fullest. The attitude at Kirkwood was positive and the atmosphere was comforting. We simply couldn’t resist. Without a doubt, the location was ideal. The Cahaba Room that overlooks the river, the mountains, the trails – there were just so many things about life. The community was lively. It was alive.

Alice Brooks Current Resident

We realized we were approaching an age where we might need more assistance than what just downsizing could provide. Knowing we have my sons nearby and the levels of care should we need it is comforting, and the beautiful hillside, river, and the woods makes it that much more appealing. We don’t know of any other community that has the woods, the various levels of care, and so many different amenities.

Phyllis and John Guschke Current Residents

We were moving my parents down from the Cleveland area to be near us. I looked at almost every retirement place in the Birmingham area. The second I turned into Kirkwood’s drive and drove up the hill, I knew that I’d found the perfect place for my parents to live in Alabama. In the six years that my parents have been at Kirkwood, I have always felt nothing but love and helpfulness from every staff member. Everyone is always helpful with a pleasant attitude. You can truly see and feel the family atmosphere. I’m happy that my parents can call Kirkwood their home.

Brenda Sheehan Kirkwood family member

When we learned that Cedar Ridge was being developed, that seemed to fit our needs very well. It is the ideal place for the next phase of our retirement.

Carol and Arthur Stephens Current Residents

One thing that we feel is very important here at Kirkwood by the River is the relationship that we have between the staff and the residents. They are dedicated to making our life here as safe and secure and pleasurable as possible. That goes a long way.

Fred Rogers Current Resident

The community's cottage living surrounded by a wooded, natural environment with access to future healthcare services is what attracted us to Kirkwood!

Rick and Jane Ricketts Current Residents