Get the Most Out of Optalis Care Centers

Dear Sarah,

I’m going to be moving to one of the Optalis care centers soon and I’m starting to get a little nervous about what it’s going to be like. Do you have any tips or advice for getting the most out of the experience?


Bert H.

Hilliard, Ohio

How to Get the Most Out of Your Stay with Optalis

Dear Bert,

Whether you’re coming to us for rehabilitation, assisted living or long-term care, each Optalis care center is bursting with activities and hospitality services to make you feel right at home.

You’ll have plenty of help during the admissions process and there are people on staff to show you the ropes once you arrive. However, if you want to get a sneak peek, here’s an insider’s guide to getting the most out of our seven Columbus-area Optalis care centers.

Canal Winchester Rehabilitation Center, Skilled Nursing & Assisted Living

Canal Winchester is our newest building, as it was completed in 2018. There’s a lot going on, both indoors and outdoors.

Outdoors, there are courtyard spaces for residents, patients and guests to enjoy some sunshine and green spaces. Indoors, there are a lot of great community spaces. For example, there’s a movie viewing area, a billiards area and a spa area.

When it was built, we made an effort to include the community. For example, we used wood from the surrounding area in the dining room and used photos and artwork from the Canal Winchester to decorate the common spaces.

Canal Winchester is all about service and hospitality. The staff has an incredibly positive attitude that helps keep things fun for the residents and patients. They love to stay active and enjoy sharing inside looks at the active community, which you can see by following their Facebook page.

Schedule a Tour


Related: Addressing the Concerns Seniors Have About Moving


Mill Run Rehabilitation Center, Skilled Nursing & Assisted Living

The culture at Mill Run, in my experience as the location’s market development specialist, is warm and welcoming. We have a lot of staff longevity and everyone is there for the right reason. There’s also a lot of collaboration between the activities department and the Optalis volunteers that brings about a lot of excellent activities that residents really enjoy.

The Mill Run care center has been in the community for over 20 years and is nestled in a little neighborhood in Hilliard, Ohio—I like to call it a hidden gem. They’ve maintained an excellent reputation in the community during that time. In fact, we see a lot of repeat visitors (with years in between visits) from people who knew they would get good therapy and good food in a nice, clean environment.

One thing that surprises people about Mill Run is how good the food is. People may assume that the food at a nursing center will be tasteless and bland, but that couldn’t be farther than the truth. The dietary team is excellent and they do a great job in the kitchen to provide people with good meals.

In terms of the physical space at Mill Run, there is an interior garden that residents and patients can see from inside, as well as go out in it and enjoy the sunshine. Residents can also garden out there if they’d like

There’s also a great activities space with French doors that open into the garden, a full kitchen and a library. The therapy gym is a recent addition and we have several computer stations throughout the building. There are also many seating areas, such as a den with a fireplace and cafe areas.

Schedule a Tour


Related: Rightsizing for Your New Chapter in Life


Monterey Rehabilitation Center, Skilled Nursing & Memory Care

Located in Grove City, Ohio, the Monterey center has been a part of the area for years and actively participates in community events.

The center has an interior garden for residents to enjoy, whether they’re looking out from their windows or spending a quiet hour enjoying the fresh air outdoors. They also have a new therapy gym that was built only a few years ago. It’s a lovely, modern space with the latest equipment to help rehab patients get back on their feet.

One of the things that stands out about Monterey is the longevity they have with the nursing team. They also offer memory care with special programming and staff specifically trained to work with people who have memory loss or dementia.

You can see for yourself what your time at Monterey would be like by checking out their Facebook page.

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New Albany Rehabilitation Center, Skilled Nursing & Assisted Living

New Albany is in a great location, right between Columbus and New Albany. They have a great reputation in the local community.

This center places a lot of emphasis on hospitality. When you walk in, you’ll be greeted by the front desk staff, who are warm, welcoming and experienced. If you need therapy, you’ll work with a therapy team with a track record of great outcomes. They have so many repeat patients, they sometimes have a wait list.

The activities department really gets to know the residents. Beyond group activities, they take time to do special things for residents on an individual basis.

As one final hospitable touch, when a rehab patient goes home, they get sent home with a meal kit. This is such a great service because often when you get home from a stay in inpatient rehab, the refrigerator is empty and no one has a chance to go to the store.

In assisted living, you’ll also see personal pictures lining the walls. The staff had residents in assisted living submit their favorite photos, then blew them up to add a warm, personal touch to the space.

Schedule a Tour


Related: Must-Haves When Downsizing to Assisted Living


Pickaway Manor Rehabilitation Center, Skilled Nursing & Assisted Living

Pickaway Manor is a nice country community located in Circleville, Ohio. It’s a tight-knit community with a good reputation.

Because of the close community ties, Pickaway Manor reflects the homegrown, welcoming feel of Circleville. The center is located in an area where generations occupy the same block, and you’ll often find residents enjoying visits from community groups. Guests and residents also enjoy viewing the local school activities, and our senior living community reflects the homegrown, welcoming feel of Circleville.

As with other communities, residents at Pickaway Manor can enjoy outdoor courtyards and walking paths. Residents in assisted living can enjoy suites with separate living, sleeping and kitchenette areas. Rehab patients receive dedicated care and support from a professional rehab and therapy team. And, of course, everyone enjoys a full slate of activities and events.

Schedule a Tour


Related: Ask the Expert: What to Pack for a Short-term Rehab Center Stay


West Park Rehabilitation Center, Skilled Nursing & Memory Care

The first thing you’ll notice at West Park is the warm and sweet atmosphere. Everyone there is down-to-earth and comfortable with each other. Located on the west side of Columbus, it’s a popular choice for many people in that area who need rehabilitation services, long-term care or memory care.

What makes West Park stand out is that the people there have been there for a long time and are very invested in what they do. It’s just a special environment where you feel welcomed.

It also has nice spaces with a therapy gym, courtyard and private rehab rooms to give you options during your stay.

Schedule a Tour

Whetstone Rehabilitation Center, Skilled Nursing & Assisted Living

Whetstone has been a staple of the Columbus community for many years. They also have a strong relationship with OhioHealth Riverside Methodist Hospital, which is right down the road.

The environment at Whetstone is unique because it’s close to downtown Columbus but it’s not quite part of the downtown area. It has a very eclectic and diverse atmosphere, with staff members who are very dedicated to what they do.

The physical space is gorgeous with beautiful landscaping outdoors and well-decorated rooms indoors. There’s also a huge interior garden that’s circled by rehab and long-term care rooms. It’s a wonderful space with flowers, huge trees and walking paths that’s perfect for hosting events, like a luau that was held recently. I recommend that if you go to Whetstone, you spend some time in the garden to soak up the sun and enjoy the soothing sound of the water feature.

Two other features of the building that you might enjoy are an aviary where you can sit and watch the birds, and a chapel with stained glass that gives residents and patients a quiet space to reflect and meditate.

Every time you walk in, you see people congregating and enjoying each other’s company in the front lobby area. There are a lot of activities you won’t want to miss at the center. The assisted living director and activities director get to know the residents and plan accordingly.

Schedule a Tour

Learn More About the Optalis Communities

If you have any questions about our communities and which is the best fit for you, you can contact us or schedule a tour. I hope this was helpful and good luck with your move!

Sarah Dixon,

Market Development Specialist for Mill Run & Whetstone