Doug Stark is the current President of ComfortCare Homes but it was originally founded by his parents Charles and Mary Lou Stark with the help of his sister Leigh Anne in 1992. The impetus was to create this new and dynamic model of care for his families needs to care for both his grandfather through the 80's.
J.W. and Reola Stark, after many years as productive citizens and entreprenurs in Wichita, were both struck with dementia presenting in 1983. At that time, they lived down the street from Doug Stark and his wife. Doug's family became increasingly involved in J.W. and Reola's care, checking on them regularly the first few years. Later Leigh, Doug's sister, moved in with their grandparents while she was attending Wichita State University.
When finally they required around-the-clock care and Mr. Stark's family was determined they would not go to long-term memory care in an institutional setting. Instead, they moved his grandparents to his parents house until they passed. In the process of caring for his grandparents, the family learned a lot about Alzheimer's and other dementias. They felt there had to be a better and more dignified way to care for someone who has demntia rather than a nursing home. Most people with dementia are confused, many times overwhelmed and simply react better in calm, familiar environment where they recieve individualized care.
The first ComfortCare Homes opened in 1993 and has since become the largest providers of dementia care in Wichita, Kansas. Currently there are eight Traditional Memory Care Homes and an Advanced Memory Care home called Founders Crest.
Our Concept of Long-Term Memory Care:
In the first papragaph, the term "dynamic" was used to describe our concept. That's becasue the company was pioneered on the idea of residential memory care in Wichita, Kansas. We recognize that most dementia and Alzheimer's suffers don't need clinical care in a large, impersonal senior care facility. Instead, they need memory care driven by their own unique behavioral needs, provided in a real home by well-trained and loving people who genuinely care for them. This is ComfortCare Homes.
Over the last 20 years we have seen many other health care facilities move towards caring for people with memory - impairment in smaller groups by breaking their buildings into smaller communities, trying to eliminate the long hallways, or building new memory care units. In many cases, these institutions advertise themseleves as "home - like." ComfortCare Homes, on the other hand, IS a REAL "Home".