Lynn Hunt

I recently was at Shuksan Healthcare Center for rehabilitation after I had surgery on my hip.

I was not looking forward to going to a “nursing home” for rehab when the option was presented to me.  I was worried that I would be lonely, bored, depressed and my needs would be met medically; after all we have all heard stories about nursing homes.

I cannot be happier to say that Shuksan was full of delightful experiences.  The nurses are always helpful but better yet friendly.  My therapists designed a rehabilitation program catered to my needs for returning home and getting back to my normal life.  They have animals and their black lab Prince truly captured my heart during my stay. I was left with the thought that there is never a dull moment at Shuksan and there is always a lot of laughter.

I am home now and doing well but I truly believe that is due to the family (because they are so much more than staff) at Shuksan and the atmosphere that they create.

Vivian Burley

When I was in the hospital, the social worker let me know that I would have to stay in a nursing home for rehabilitation before returning home. My family researched all of the facilities and let me know that Shuksan was the first choice and boy am I ever glad we chose them.

Shuksan is so clean, the floors and rooms are constantly cleaned and better yet… there is no “smell” that I often associate with nursing homes. The nursing team at Shuksan is stellar and always happy to oblige my requests especially the wonderful aides. I loved the therapy team as well. They made working hard fun and achieving goals was a real victory. My favorite part of staying at Shuksan was the activities. Nancy and Marilyn (the activity gals) always made day to day life FUN! I even went to the casino while I was there. Another nice thing is the bus that Shuksan has. I was able to use it to go to all of my appointments. No waiting 2+ hours for this gal.

When I am in need of another rehabilitation stay; I wouldn’t think of going anywhere else and I would recommend them to anyone in the community looking for the best place in town.

Jack Flannery

I have been to Shuksan Healthcare a few times over the last couple of years to recover after being in the hospital. I have been in a couple of other nursing homes myself as well as my late wife and I can honestly say that nothing compares to the loving feeling you get when you’re at Shuksan.

The staff is tremendous! They are always attentive, on the ball and respond to my needs immediately. I felt that the staff cared about me and my wellbeing genuinely. I’ve gotten calls at home just to check in and see how I’m doing which means a lot to me.

The food is great and I just love the pancake breakfasts they have monthly. I drive all the way from Blaine to come and have breakfast with them! Not to mention their activity staff bakes the most delicious bread daily, I can’t miss out on that!

I can’t say enough good things about the staff and people at Shuksan. This picture was taken when I was out to lunch with one of the gals at Shuksan. Do you see that smile? She gave it to me.

Jerry Hopson

I recently had knee surgery and was sent to Shuksan Healthcare Center for rehabilitation.

I could not have been more pleased with my stay. My nurses were kind, knowledgeable, and helpful. The therapy team was fun to work with and obviously experts in what needed to get done. I happened to discharge on my birthday and the staff even bought me an ice cream cake (they knew it was my favorite). That is just one example of the many things the team at Shuksan does to go above and beyond for their residents.

I can’t even think of anything that needed improvement. I enjoyed my stay so much that I even come back to visit regularly. I tell everyone I know, if they need rehab to be sure to go to Shuksan.

~Jerry Hopson

Bette Bjarnason

I live happily at home with my husband here in Bellingham. I unfortunately fell on the pavement when I walking down the steps in my garage and ended up at St. Joseph Hospital. When I was there, it became apparent that I wouldn’t be able to go straight home from the hospital as I needed a lot more rehabilitation and care. My husband went to a few skilled nursing facilities and chose Shuksan Healthcare. I am so glad that he did.

During my stay at Shuksan, I felt like I was in a hotel rather than a rehabilitation center. The staff is so accommodating. When I turned on my call light, the aides came running to see what I needed and were always happy to oblige even the smallest request. The nurses are all so knowledgeable, kind and prompt with my medication. If you can believe it, I actually enjoyed therapy! When I got to Shuksan I was basically an invalid in bed needing help for everything. Now, I’m at home and I don’t even need my cane anymore! I attribute my success to the dynamic and wonderful team at Shuksan.

If you or your loved one are looking for a place to recuperate after being in the hospital, I cannot recommend Shuksan enough!

Larry O’Grady

It was a little unsettling to hear that I needed to go to a nursing home for a short stay. My wife and daughter did some research and we spoke to some people who had been in a nursing home for rehab in the past and Shuksan was recommended by everyone. I am so happy that we chose to go there.

During my stay, I felt that the nursing staff was exceptional. They always made me feel very comfortable. If I had a question about a medication or why something was happening, the nursing team never made me feel like a bother. The nurses were always happy to take the time to explain the answer and make sure I was okay with it. I felt like I always made the decisions and they were not made for me. That gave me peace of mind.

I always felt like I was in knowledgeable and good hands when I was working with the therapy team. I especially bonded with Dale Nakatani the Rehabilitation Manager at Shuksan. He really took me under his wing and made sure that I had all the support that I needed to exceed my goals.

I fell in love while I was at Shuksan… The cat Toby adopted me and I adopted him.

Overall, I was very surprised and pleased with the quality of care that Shuksan gave me. I would recommend Shuksan to anyone in need of rehabilitation after surgery or hospitalization.

Judy Pomeroy

I fell at my house and fractured my hip. I ended up at St. Joseph Hospital and the staff there told me I would have to go to a skilled nursing facility before I could return home. Naturally, I was disappointed I wouldn’t be able to go home but I am very grateful I was able to do my rehabilitation at Shuksan Healthcare Center.

The staff was so wonderful. What surprised me most was how funny they were. I laughed so much during my stay and I feel that really made a difference in my emotional state. My therapists knew just what to say to get the best out of me.

The other thing that I really appreciated was how clean and fresh that place is. Most of people who came to visit me during my stay at Shuksan commented on that as well.

I’m at home now and doing great. I can’t thank the team at Shuksan enough for all that they do and how kind they were to me during a time that I was very vulnerable. I would recommend Shuksan to anyone in need of a place to rehab or live long term.

Reenie Anderson

VLUU L200 / Samsung L200

I was born with cerebral palsy and have been battling cancer so needless to say, I am no stranger to hospitals and care facilities.  I can say with confidence that Shuksan Healthcare is the best place I have ever gone for rehabilitation. I liked it so much that I’ve been there twice!

I’ve always had a strong personality and I know I’m not always the easiest to get along with, not to mention when it comes to patience… I tend to have short fuse. What I loved about Shuksan is that they let me be me. They didn’t try to change me or diminish the “spunk” within me instead they accepted me and I will be forever grateful for that as I have not always experienced that in the past.
While I was rehabbing, I was able to observe how the staff treats the other residents that have made Shuksan their home and all I can say is that if I ever need to be a in place long term, Shuksan is where I would want to be.

I’m doing so well at home and feel so well supported that my hair is finally growing back!

Thank you Shuksan for all you have done for me.

Robert Cervantez

While I was planning my knee surgery, my physician let me know that I might benefit from a skilled nursing rehabilitation stay. The idea was very unpleasant but I spoke with my girlfriend Mary Jo and she said that she knew Shuksan was a good place and recommended I go there.

While I was at Shuksan, I found the nurses to be very competent and on the ball. I especially enjoyed Ryan Beeson Licensed Practical Nurse. Ryan talked to me like I was a friend rather than a patient. I found myself looking forward to his shifts.

I liked all the therapists. They were all very creative in designing exercises that were practical yet fun. I even got to walk my dog as part of my therapy. I found Jen Bauer Physical Therapist to be spectacular and I really enjoyed the massage therapy that I got from Jan Burbank Licensed Massage Therapist/Physical Therapy Assistant.

Overall, I felt very pampered while I was at Shuksan. All of the staff sought to please me. The food was good and they even brought me a beer with dinner.

When I left, I felt like I was overflowing with good fortune. I am having surgery on my other knee and I already have my room reserved to come back!

I would recommend Shuksan Healthcare to anyone in need of support after a surgery.

Dean Franzen

When I was in the hospital, I had a lot of unanswered questions about my health and what I needed to do to get better. The staff at the hospital just told me that I needed a rehabilitation stay at a skilled nursing facility before I could go home. I knew that I needed help but I had never been in a place like that before and I also was worried that I was too young to be there.

 I ended up going to Shuksan Healthcare and I am so glad that I did. The staff at Shuksan saw that I was not only worried about my health but also worried about being there in general and they were so attentive and put me at ease.

 The nurses are always approachable and happy to answer any question that I might have had. I feel like they are not just staff but my friends now as well.

 I also want to particularly thank Jen Bauer the Physical Therapist at Shuksan. I thank god daily for her ability to not only help my physically but her genuine capability to make me laugh. That was really healing for my soul.

 I am now back in the community and living in my own apartment and I can honestly say that I wouldn’t be here without the team at Shuksan’s help. I would recommend Shuksan Healthcare to anyone in need of a helping hand in healthcare. They have changed my life for the better and I know they can help you too!

Anna Raplee

I have been to Shuksan Healthcare Center twice for rehabilitation. During both of my stays, I found my favorite part of coming to Shuksan was the superb care that I received. I always felt that the staff genuinely cared about me and my wellbeing. I never felt like I was a “bother” or “nuisance”. The staff always went above and beyond my expectations.

The therapists are all wonderful and were pivotal to my successful return home.   I also especially loved the activities staff. One of them went on vacation and even brought me back a present. That meant so much to me that she was thinking of me on her time off.

Now that I’m home and doing well, I still come in monthly to the pancake breakfast (3rd Friday of every month) to see my Shuksan family.

I recommend Shuksan to anyone in need of rehabilitation prior to returning home

Mary Murphy

I have been to Shuksan Healthcare Center twice for rehabilitation. In 2010, I came to Shuksan to recover after my daughter toured and liked the feel of it. I was impressed with my stay and knew that if I needed rehabilitation again, I would go back to Shuksan. As my luck would have it, I needed to come back to Shuksan this year after I broke my hip. When I came back to Shuksan I was surprised by how much it had improved (I didn’t think it needed any improvement to begin with) but they continued to surprise and please me during my stay.

The courtyard landscape has matured and become even more beautiful. Shuksan permeates this feeling of warmth and kindness. I loved the more relaxed and less formal atmosphere as well. I was greeted everyday with the wonderful scent of fresh baked bread and loved on by Shuksan’s cats and black lab Prince. Even on the days that I was tired and didn’t feel like therapy, the team at Shuksan would find creative ways to give me the incentive to do so. That is just one of the many examples of how the team at Shuksan catered and made a rehab plan based on my needs.

I would recommend Shuksan to anyone in need of rehabilitation prior to going home.

David Polen

I was recently in St Joseph’s Hospital. While I was there, I was told by the staff that I would need to go to a skilled nursing facility prior to returning home. I knew that I was going to need the extra support but I was not looking forward to it. My wife Jan toured the different places in Bellingham and she said she decided on Shuksan because she loved how warm and friendly the staff was when she popped in to take a look around.

During my stay at Shuksan, I was consistently surprised by how caring the staff is. Everyone takes the time to learn your name and speak with you when they see you from management to the housekeepers. The staff was always so considerate. I was always asked if I needed the blinds closed, window opened, or a special snack (they would bring me ice cream at my request). I have never experienced better customer service/kindness in a healthcare setting.

There is a lot of laughter at Shuksan and I never thought I would smile so much during such a difficult time in my life.

When I was leaving Shuksan my first thought was that they made me feel like I wanted to do something for them in return.

Bobby Dupree

I was recently at Shuksan Healthcare to recover from being at the hospital.  I never thought for a minute that going to a skilled nursing facility would do much for me physically or emotionally, as I had been in a similar facility here in Bellingham before and it was not a pleasant experience.  I am so pleased to say that Shuksan surprised me.

Being at Shuksan felt like a home away from home.  The aides and nurses are so loving, kind and approachable.  I never felt like I was a bother.  The therapy department made an individual therapy plan for me based on my needs and wants.  I felt like I had a say in what was going on which made me feel at ease and comfortable while staying there.  Even the Administrator Shannon Richardson came down to see how I was doing and if there was anything she could personally do to make my stay more comfortable and enjoyable.  That meant a lot to me and made me feel like I mattered.

I told my physician Dr. Clure just how wonderful Shuksan was and I am telling you that if you need a place to stay after being in the hospital, Shuksan is the place to be!

Margaret Farrar

I was very ill when I was in the hospital. To the point that I was there for over a month before being able to leave. When I heard that I was going to be able to leave the hospital; I was jubilant. When I heard I would have to go to a skilled nursing facility prior to returning home; I was less than excited. I know what nursing homes can be like and I did not want to be there.

My stay at Shuksan Healthcare Center from day one was unlike anything I thought I would experience. The staff was smiling and laughing. I thought maybe they were just putting on a show for me but I came to find that the staff was genuinely happy. My nurses managed my tracheostomy with skill and ease and my therapists encouraged me when I needed to be and got more successes out of me than I even thought possible.

I was able to go home successfully but the memory that stuck with me was the huge goodbye when the time came. The staff sang and clapped and made me feel very special.

I was home for a while when I had a decline in condition and was told I would need another skilled nursing stay. I knew immediately that I would want to return to my friends at Shuksan. I went in for a “tune up” and now I’m home and happy with my husband Doug.

I cannot recommend Shuksan enough to anyone in need of a skilled nursing/ therapy stay prior to returning home.

Darlene Norsby

I stayed at Shuksan Healthcare Center for rehabilitation a couple months ago and I cannot find the words to describe just how happy I was with the staff and my stay.

I am no stranger to hospitals and skilled nursing facilities as I have been battling cancer, so when the staff at St. Joseph Hospital said I needed a rehab stay prior to going home, I was upset and did not want to go. I decided on Shuksan because they were a smaller building and I was hoping that would mean better care and boy was I ever right!

My rehab stay felt like a vacation. There were so many smiling faces and jokes going around that I never felt like a “patient”. The staff all genuinely cared about me and how I was doing. I never felt that way before when I was at other skilled nursing facilities. l made friends and would come back to Shuksan if I ever needed another rehab stay. I love the team at Shuksan so much that I am planning on catering a dinner for the staff as a thank you for treating me so well.

Joan Myers

Living in Sudden Valley is not for the weak of ankles, so imagine my dismay when it was recommended that I have my right ankle replaced! Last December I went to St Joseph’s Hospital to have surgery performed by Dr. Tarranow. After the successful procedure, I was discharged to Shuksan Healthcare Center for rehabilitation.

I wasn’t sure how long my recovery would take, I was hoping I would be home by Valentine’s Day. One of the diffi culties was adhering to the doctor’s order of only putting half of my weight on my right leg. The nursing as therapy staff at Shuksan provided consistent reminders and taught me how to accommodate this restriction while maximizing my independence. Honestly, one of the most challenging things was being patient while waiting for my body to heal. I missed my friends, my home and especially my little dog, Twerp. Thankfully the staff at Shuksan is friendly and entertaining, I made new friends, and most importantly they allowed Twerp to visit often. He even made a new friend… their facility dog, Prince!

Before I knew it, the doctor had lifted my weight-baring limitation and I was able to enter into the next phase of my rehab. The Physical Therapist worked with me on decreasing swelling and improving my ankle motion and strength. They helped me learn to walk again and feel confi dent climbing stairs. The Occupational Therapist facilitated my independence and safety with getting dressed and taking care of myself. They even came out to my house and did a safety assessment to make sure I would be successful at home.

When the time came to return home, I was so excited to hear that the therapists that I have grown to love would be able to come out to my house and work with me. They call this new program “Shuksan To-Go”…. Isn’t that fun? I rave to my friends about my experience at Shuksan. I’m so grateful for their excellent care and feel reassured knowing that they are there if I ever need care again.

Bob and Barbara Anderson

Hi! I’m Barbara Anderson and this is my husband Bob. We have both been to Shuksan Healthcare at different times after recovering from surgery at St Joseph Hospital. I had surgery on both of my knees and Bob has had back surgery and knee surgery as well.

As you can imagine, Bob and I both were not excited at the prospect of going to a nursing home for rehabilitation after being in the hospital. Naturally, we wanted to return home but it was evident that was not going to be an option. We ended up choosing Shuksan Healthcare and we are so happy that we did.

We both love the animals at Shuksan. It really makes the place feel like a home. I know our great grandchildren especially appreciated it when they would come to visit.

Bob and I both have really grown to love the therapy team at Shuksan. We always felt very comfortable and like we were with the right professionals who knew what exercises we needed to meet our goal of returning home.

Bob also loved the food, maybe even more than my own cooking! He says even the oatmeal is good. We both looked forward to getting our fresh baked bread delivered daily by Nancy in activities.

Bob and I are very active at Christ the Servant Lutheran Church and we have recommended Shuksan to everyone there but we want recommend Shuksan Healthcare to anyone in the community in need of rehabilitation after a surgery or hospitalization.

George “Ed” Barnhart

When I was getting ready to go to a Skilled Nursing Facility; I had some concerns. I was worried if I was going to get the care that I needed and frankly scared of the title of “Nursing Home” as a previous stay of mine was not very pleasant at a different nursing facility here in town.

While working with the nursing team at Shuksan, I felt they were professional, caring and compassionate. On a scale of 1 to 10, they scored a 15+.

The therapy team was very well equipped to meet all of my needs and even gave me extra instructions to remain successful at home. I felt very confident while working with them that they knew what exercises were needed to meet my goals of returning home.

Shuksan is the cleanest and happiest care facility that I have seen. The entire staff is professional yet approachable and I would recommend Shuksan to anyone who is looking for a place to rehabilitate after surgery. I left feeling like I had not only met my goals but made some friends along the way.

~George Barnhart

Terri Inge

It has been almost a year since I left Shuksan Healthcare Center and it has been a fantastic year. At Shuksan Healthcare Center I found an extremely caring, competent and professional staff. I arrived at Shuksan for rehabilitation following a fractured vertebra in my back and brain surgery. The latter being the more serious.

The Physical, Occupational, and Speech Therapists worked with me every day for two and a half months. There were short sessions at first as I healed and then multiple sessions each day… even on a Saturday or Sunday. The therapists knowledge and support pushed me towards recovery and gave me hope that my life could return to normal.

After two and a half months of progressive rehabilitation, my recovery was complete and I was able to “ring the bell” and return to my home. Thank You Shuksan Healthcare Team for providing the professional care and therapy that I so desperately needed for a successful recovery!

Jeanne Bricker

I recently stayed at Shuksan Healthcare Center for rehabilitation after being in the hospital.  As anyone would be, I wasn’t happy that I couldn’t go home right away and was not looking forward to my stay.

In reflection after returning home, I realized just how lucky I was to be able to rehab at Shuksan.  The staff is very knowledgeable but more importantly, genuinely caring.  My therapists gave me the confi dence I didn’t know I possessed and the skills to achieve goals I wasn’t sure I would be able to.

I am a huge Seahawks fan and the staff joined in and helped me cheer them on as I was recovering.  There were a couple of 49ers fans on the team at Shuksan and we had a good rivalry too.

I would recommend Shuksan to anyone in need of rehabilitation.

Wilfred Hayes

My dad was a Shuksan for a rehab stay recently. We have been to other nursing facilities and I can sadly say that after spending months at other facilities; I couldn’t remember a single staff member’s name or say one good thing about them. So when my dad was in the hospital again; we ended up choosing Shuksan for him to rehab at as it’s close to his house and easy for my mother to visit. We figured the care wouldn’t be any different so we chose based on convenient location. It wasn’t even two days into my father’s stay that we knew Shuksan was more than convenient, this place was a hidden gem!

I love the fact that when you walk into Shuksan on any given day, you are greeted by either someone in administration, a nurse as they pass by, the wonderful resident dog Prince, the sound of music coming from the dining room or the smell of fresh baked bread. Whoever or whatever greeted me, I felt at ease and at home.

My hats off to all the therapy staff for all the wonderful and creative ways to interact with the patients, they made working with my dad productive and fun! I also wanted to thank all of the nurses and nursing assistants for not only taking wonderful care of my father’s health but for realizing that visiting with my father was as much a part of his healing. Thank you for taking the time to share your stories and listen to his. I was actually able to go home and sleep well knowing my dad was in good hands and that wasn’t the case in the past.

My Dad tells me this was the best experience he has ever had and he never wants to go anywhere else in the future.  Our family cannot thank Shuksan enough for restoring our faith in geriatric healthcare in Bellingham and would recommend anyone in the community to bypass the heartache of going anywhere else in town and just go straight to Shuksan.

~Cindy Wood and Wilfred Hayes

Liz Scott

It was apparant that I would need to go to a skilled nursing facility for rehab prior to going home after my knee surgery, my heart sunk. I had been to a nursing facility before and I wasn’t looking forward to another stay. I live in Friday Harbor but decided to go to a Bellingham facility as it would be easier for me to go to my follow up appointments after surgery. By word of mouth Shuksan Healthcare was recommended more than any other facility in Bellingham, so I chose Shuksan. I am extremely happy that I did.

On my first day at Shuksan, I had three different residents stop by my room to welcome me to their home and invite me to attend the activities that they enjoyed. It really showed me that long term care residents at Shuksan are active, proud, and happy to live at Shuksan.

The biggest difference that I noticed was the staff. They are exceptional! Their compassion, hard work, training, along with kindness, gave me as a rehab resident the sense of being taken care of in my own home. It also became apparent quickly that the staff enjoy working at Shuksan. As a whole the staff is wonderful to the residents but I also saw firsthand that the staff cares about one another and is a team.

Thanks to the therapy team as well. Due to the wonderful care and oversight of Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy, I was able to go home a week early!

If I ever have another rehab need, I know I will be returning and I will tell anyone who will listen that their loved one deserves to be treated the way I was when I was there.