“Having a medical director in-house five days a week makes all the difference in the world,” says Dr. Chris Gehrlein, who has become full-time at Rochester Manor + Villa after a decade of service. “We’re transforming medical care by being more available and more involved, and helping our clients get better and get home faster.”
Affiliated with Heritage Valley Medical Group, Dr. Gehrlein leads a team of RM+V nurses, therapists, certified nursing assistants and staff in a daily conversation about their clients’ care. Their goal is to monitor a client’s overall health and, when needed, to provide immediate, on-site treatment to avoid emergency room visits and hospital admissions. In many cases, he’s already been a client’s primary care physician for years.
Clients treasure his love for the elderly, his concern for their well-being and his ability to speak in clear, layman English, not medical jargon. His team relishes his desire to be their mentor, educator and coach through feedback, training and continuous improvement.
Dr. Gehrlein’s move to full-time status coincides with RM+V’s award-winning transformation of its Rochester facilities into a “person-centered health care community” providing rehabilitation, skilled nursing and personal care services. RM+V has created a new neighborhood model giving clients and their families many more choices about the lifestyle they prefer and deserve. These changes are why RM+V received the “2015 Business of the Year” recognition by the Beaver County Chamber of Commerce.
“The physical transformation is more homelike and comfortable and helps our clients have a better frame of mind,” he says. “Physical care goes hand in hand with mental and emotional health.”
In his early 40s, Dr. Gehrlein is a proponent of electronic medical records and other technology advances which are moving health care away from a traditional but outdated institutional environment. These give him faster access to medical charts and prescription lists, allowing more efficient communications with clients and their families.
Dr. Gehrlein is married and the father of four. He is board certified by the American Board of Family Medicine. He obtained his medical degree from Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine after receiving his bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame.