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Evidence-based Nexus at Silverado® Brain-Health Program Shows Benefit to Individuals in the Early-Stages of Alzheimer’s Disease


IRVINE, CA – August 13, 2018 – Nexus at Silverado® has been found with statistical significance to stabilize or improve cognition and Activities of Daily Living (ADL) performance among residents in the early stages of dementia. In addition, based on a growing body of compelling evidence that lifestyle factors can affect the onset and progression of Alzheimer’s disease, this program served as a pilot for Mette Andresen, PhD, Professor, University College Absalon, Denmark, and National Expert on Dementia research.  Dr. Andresen is now committed to implementing a brain-health program based on the six pillars of Nexus in Danish long-term care facilities. At the 2018 Alzheimer’s Disease International Conference (ADI), Dr. Andresen presented her review of the Nexus brain-health program and the improvements in cognition and function seen in participating residents.

Actively leading Nexus are Kim Butrum, MS, RN, GNP, Silverado’s Senior Vice President of Clinical Services, and Kathy Greene, MSW, Senior Vice President, Programs and Services Integration. Butrum has more than 30 years of extensive experience, including clinical expertise in serving those with neurodegenerative disorders and a strong background in Alzheimer's and dementia research. Greene has more than three decades of experience in skilled nursing and assisted living, and has been instrumental in the development and implementation of various social programs at Silverado.

“Over time, this program has significantly improved participating residents’ ADL, the number-one driver for quality of life,” shares Butrum. “When Nexus is provided within our strength-based therapeutic model of care, we can truly change the expected trajectory of decline seen in those living with dementia.”

Greene adds, “What’s unique about Nexus is that it can reduce the stigma for those living with early-stage or mild memory-impairment. Our participating residents are kayaking, learning a new language, and even have recently achieved over 11,000 volunteer hours in the greater community.”

All Silverado Memory Care Communities offer the 20-hour-a-week program, comprised of six brain-health pillars, including:

  • Purposeful Social Activities, such as volunteering or teaching a skill to others, which have been shown to modify the effect of Alzheimer’s disease pathology, possibly due to growth of one’s cognitive reserve of healthy brain cells;
  • Physical Activity, such as Ping-Pong, bicycling, or kayaking, which have been found to impact the brain through improved executive function, cognition and memory;
  • Stress Reduction, such as meditation, yoga, or Tai Chi, which have been shown to activate the hippocampus, the part of the brain where Alzheimer’s disease starts;
  • Cognitive Exercise, such as Science Club, Improv, learning a new language, and word strategy games, which have been associated with slower cognitive decline;
  • Support Groups, facilitated monthly by our Director of Residents and Family Services who have a Master’s degree in Social Work, which may be of psychological benefit by reducing depression, encouraging socialization and improving self–esteem;
  • Specialized Digital Programs, which have been associated with a trend towards memory improvement for those living with Mild Cognitive Impairment.

Although Nexus was designed to enhance the lives of residents with early-stage dementia, it features widely-accepted healthy habits, diet recommendations, and brain-building components beneficial to all.  Our family members, Silverado associates and caregivers are welcome to participate. To learn more about Nexus and to read some of the research behind the program, visit

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