Showing Appreciation for Caregivers

resident and nurse highfiving

With the holiday season approaching, my family would like to do something to show our gratitude for one of the nurses that cares for my mom at her nursing home. While the whole staff is just terrific, this nurse has gone above and beyond to support my mom.

We would like to give her a holiday gift card or even cash. I’m sure there are rules about what we can and can’t do when it comes to showing appreciation to staff members. We want to be careful not to do anything that causes problems for her.

Could you explain to us the best way to go about recognizing my mom’s nurse?



Thanking those who Care for a Senior Loved One

Dear Cassandra:

This is a common question around the holidays! Families are often hoping to be able to show a staff member how much they appreciate them. Sometimes it’s a housekeeper and, other times, it’s a nurse, aide or dietitian.

My first piece of advice is not to underestimate just how much a few kind words of thanks or a simple thank-you note can mean. Our staff members enjoy working with residents, but knowing their assistance is appreciated means a lot.

Now on to answer your question about holiday gift giving: Staff members are NOT allowed to accept cash or gifts of significant value. For a variety of reasons, this is a policy that is strictly enforced. What is allowable are gestures such as homemade holiday cookies or candy that can be left at the nurses, station or in the staff break room.

Beyond that, we encourage families to use our Standing Ovation Employee Recognition program. You can share your story of appreciation this way. Once you do, the staff member is entered into voting for our Employee of the Month contest. The monthly winner receives a $50 gift card amongst other gifts.

The 12 employees who receive this honor during the year are then recognized at a year-end banquet with their managers. From these 12 employees, an employee of the year is chosen. The winner receives many gifts including a $100 gift card.

The staff at your mother’s nursing home can help you learn more about the Standing Ovation Employee Recognition program.

Thank you for asking this question, Cassandra! Happy Holidays to you and your family.