Planetree International


Planetree’s Global Reach

Since Planetree’s founding in 1978 by an Argentine-born patient, Angelica Thieriot, interest in patient-centered care delivery has intensified in all corners of the world.  Health care providers in several countries, including Canada, Japan, Brazil, The Netherlands, Denmark, Belgium and France have partnered with Planetree and are attaining the expertise, tools and support needed to transform the health care experience for patients, long-term care residents and caregivers alike.  Planetree is a highly adaptable model, not a one-size-fits-all solution, in order to suit the personal, cultural and spiritual needs of patients and caregivers internationally.

Planetree not only provides on-site expertise and a variety of educational resources, but a collaborative global network of like-minded health care leaders sharing practical, field-tested solutions.  Planetree’s staff—hailing from England, Ecuador, Ireland, Brazil, Quebec and The Netherlands—bring vast experience and perspectives in order to transform health care delivery that puts the needs of patients first and enables caregivers to focus on their passion for healing.  A sought-after keynote presenter, Planetree President Susan Frampton, PhD, shares these innovative yet practical patient-centered strategies at international health care conferences, including ISQua, WHO-Health Promoting Hospitals and IHI.  Annually, Planetree attracts more than 1,200 leaders at its own international conference to inspire new ideas and share research and evidence-based, best practices with a variety of caregivers, including top executives, quality and safety directors, physicians and nurses.  The 2013 Planetree Annual Conference will be held in the Montreal, Canada October 6th -9th.

Karin Jay
Senior Director, International Business Development and Operations
Phone +1-203-446-6653
Fax    +1-203-732-1338
Skype: karin.jay
Time Zone -6 GMT (CST)

Planetree Headquarters
130 Division Street
Derby, CT 06418

Upcoming Meetings and Presentations

2014 Events

Global Lessons in Patient-Centered Care from the Planetree Network – How to Harness Patients’ Power Workshop, 2014 Careum Congress – Basel Switzerland- March 17 – 18

Region Sjælland Workshop,  Denmark – January 16

ISQua Conference, Rio de Janeiro , Brazil – October 5-8

2013 Events

IHI/BMJ International Forum on Quality and Safety in Healthcare
ExCeL London – London, England
16-19 April 2013

We welcome the opportunity to meet with you, so please stop by our booth

Patient-Centered Care Workshop
Starhotel Echo, Milan
Viale Andrea Doria 4, Milan
Link to Brochure

International Society for Quality in Health Care
Edinburgh International Conference Center -Edinburgh, Scotland
13-16 October 2013

We welcome the opportunity to meet with you, so please stop by our booth

The Joanna Briggs Institute 2013 Biennial International Convention
Intercontinental Adelaide, Australia
21-23 October 2013

Compassionate Care Conference
St. Patrick’s Hospital
Cashel, Co Tipperary
11 November 2013


Planetree International Offices:
The Netherlands


The Planetree International Designation Program

The Planetree International Designation Program was launched in 2007, and since that time numerous health care organizations in four countries have achieved the designation. All designation decisions are made by an independent committee whose membership includes individuals with extensive experience with such organizations as the American Hospital Association, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and The Joint Commission, among others. Designation decisions are made on a blinded basis and are based on a review of policies and practices in place at applicant site, as demonstrated by written documentation and verified by patient, resident, family and staff focus group

Planetree’s coaching services and educational resources are designed to share these field-tested practices and in so doing invigorate, inspire caregivers.

For details about the Designation categories and sample criteria, click here  (to the chart of sample criteria)

The Benefits of Planetree Designation

The criteria and processes for achieving Planetree Designation are documented in the Designation Process Manual, available for purchase here.

Organizations interested in applying for designation should contact Sara Guastello, Director of Designation and Resource Development, at or (203) 732-7171.

Planetree International Designated Sites

Care Center, Huize Loôn

Huize Loôn Care Center at Overloon offers residents a comfortable and warm environment where they can feel at home as a result of its small scaled, home-like setting.  Situated in the center of the village, Huize Loôn includes many locals among their staff and volunteers which makes for a strong attachment to the Overloon community.  In addition to the 34 care units, Huize Loôn has a small unit providing care and attention for eight residents suffering from psychogeriatric illness. Next to this unit, 40 resident care apartments are home to those who are still very independent but benefit from the support and activities available through the care center.  Huize Loôn is part of the Pantein Care Centers, consisting of the Care Center, Home Care and Maas Hospital Pantein—a total of nine care and nine support centers in Northern Brabant that are fundamental to elderly living in care centers or resident homes and the chronically ill in need of care and support. Pantein feels responsible and wants to contribute to the personal health and well-being of their community.

Care Center, Op’t Hoogveld Het Gasthuis

Het Gasthuis literally means guesthouse and is an ancient name for hospitals (Het Gasthuis goes back to the year 1321). The new building is located near the hospital and the nursing home has 163 residents. They differ in their need of caring and nursing. Some are in a revalidation program and are expected to leave within three months. Others are in units for long term care or in specialized units for intensive nursing care like terminal care or respiration and ventilation.

Het Gasthuis has an own little shop for residents supporting them with housekeeping and cooking.

Het Gasthuis is one of the three expertise locations for specialized care as well for somatic clients as for patients with dementia. For both groups Rivas developed several programs. The unit for respiration therapy is very intensive in care. Special attention is paid to communications in very different ways using internet facilities and computer programs. This unit has a supra-regional function because the high costs and the trained staff needed.

Het Gasthuis started an inspiring program for patients with Alzheimer disease based on theories regarding over- or under stimulation. It is called BOM (brain and surrounding methods). Staff members in the region Gorinchem look for opportunities like BOM to linger this into Planetree filosofy. This because the surrounding and staff behaviour is the key issue to this approach. BOM method is offered to family members, volunteers, care givers and staff.

Centre de réadaptation Estrie (CRE)

The first Canadian institution to adopt the Planetree model, the Centre de réadaptation Estrie (CRE) is based in Sherbrooke, Quebec (Canada). At the CRE, we are dedicated to improving the well-being of individuals with motor, hearing, visual, language or speech impairments. We use all our knowledge, know-how and people-oriented skills to offer care and rehabilitation services in a specialized environment that respects people in their physical, psychological, social and spiritual dimensions. We mostly offer outpatient care, with the exception of a 12-bed rehabilitation unit.  Please click here for more information.

De Merlinge

De Merlinge is a small-scale living group for twelve elderly with psychogeriatric disorders. It is part of a residential and shopping complex where 97 elderly can live independently, possibly with home care. Arkel Village (with a population of 3500 residents and part of the municipality of Giessenlanden, together with six other villages) has in this way a setting where people can live in their own village and get good care and support. Situated on the ground floor of the complex, De Merlinge comprises two groups of six residents each.  “As much like home as possible” is shaped by neighbors, family and staff by sharing a household together, thereby maximizing joint shopping, cooking, washing, ironing, etc.  Please click here for more information.

De Wieken

De Wieken, part of Rivas Zorggroep, is a nursing home in Papendrecht and provides care for 60 patients with dementia disorders.  The nursing home is built like a street with small houses, each home to ten patients. The street, which is in fact the corridor, offers facilities for walking, sitting and enjoying the company of family or other residents. The street also features facilities such as a restaurant, a museum and an activity centre for hobbies. In addition, it serves as a place for staging exhibitions with paintings, display cabinets with collections, etc.  This so-called street has been done up like a park with benches and corners with plants, birdsong CDs and pets. There is also a little shop where groceries and day-to-day shopping are available for the ten-resident households living in each section of the building.  Besides cooking and other housekeeping activities, De Wieken offers a lot of Planetree-oriented spa activities such as aromatherapy, hand and body massage and a wide variety of social activities such as walks, trips to watch a choir and religious services.  Family members, volunteers and professionals work closely together to offer the best they possibly can for the residents. One of the most important elements is writing and visualizing the lifeline of the residents in the lifecycle and lifestyle book. It is recognized to be one of the best ways to connect with the resident’s history and understand most with regard to his or her motivations and choices made in life events. Featuring stories, pictures and more, this book is an important resource for maintaining the life as it was lived in the past and the transfer to things happening in real time.  De Wieken is situated in a suburban area, close to Papendrecht’s border. There is a close collaboration with other Rivas sites in Papendrecht itself and in nearby villages. These sites provide each other with services and staff, including doctors, therapists and nursing staff. De Wieken is the guide for two other sites in Papendrecht in the Planetree Designation process.


Flevo Hospital is a 368-bed general hospital situated in a city founded on land regained from the sea. In 1990, six years after the city was founded, the hospital started with 180 beds for the 78,000 inhabitants. Twenty years later, the hospital has grown to a medium sized hospital for 188,000 inhabitants in a still rapid growing city.  Please click here for more information.

Gemini Ziekenhuis


Molenhoek literally means Mill Corner. In the heart of the old part of Gorinchem there were a number of mills for grinding flour or pumping water. Nowadays only one remains in one of the bastions in the city wall. It has lent its name to this small-scale home for 20 Rivas patients with dementia. The mill is visible from residents’ windows, and before the door lies the centre of town with all its facilities and services such as shops, restaurants, library.

The architect has produced a great Planetree performance building, a facility that on the outside looks to be three different houses with their own façade and appearance. The interior is one 3-storey house for twenty residents.

Each floor offers group facilities and its own bedroom and bathroom for each of the patients. All caring and nursing is based on family values, ensuring residents, family volunteers and staff feel as at home as possible. Optimum health and living together with good medical and nursing attention is a complex and challenging achievement.

Molenhoek works together with another Rivas Facility; in fact, they are neighbours. Steijndeld lies just across the street and offers housing and care to 65 other Rivas clients. Molenhoek can use services from Steijndeld such as night-time support from nursing staff, safety back-up, meals and cleaning if necessary. Molenhoek has some patios but can use its neighbour’s garden as well. The garden and terrace lie on the bank of the River Linge, which flows through Gorinchem and is one of the most picturesque rivers in Holland.

Molenhoek is one of the sites in the Rivas organization pioneering Planetree. They were early starters in small-scale service-provision. They had to wait a long time before the facility could be built because there were not that many opportunities to build in the city centre. Now this dream, held by a good number of Gorinchem residents, has become a reality. Living in the city centre with all the care, nursing and medical attention you could need.

Molenhoek is Steijndeld’s partner in the designation process and they have now made their mark.


The Toonladder is a residential care center for small-scale living in Almere, the fastest growing city in the Netherlands.  The Toonladder is part of Zorggroep Almere (Care Group Almere), the largest healthcare institution in the city.  The care group is an umbrella organization of primary health care (through 23 district health centers), care for the elderly. and home care in Almere. In the Toonladder, living, care and well-being go hand in hand. Housing and care are separated. The residents rent their homes from a housing association, but are provided with care by the employees of the Toonladder.  Please click here for more information.


Tiendwaert Nursing Home is a small nursing home with thirty residents who have a form of dementia and twenty residents who have a physical disability. They live in six resident groups (with shared living room, adjacent to a patio) of six to ten clients with each resident having his or her own room.  Tiendwaert has a warm and relaxed atmosphere in which involvement and individual attention are of primary importance. It is a home for residents.  Staff are their guests and must conduct themselves accordingly. For that reason, attention is constantly focused on providing a sense of being at home, so that the resident feels safe and secure.  The residents occupy themselves with day-to-day things and this ties in with what they were used to. Apart from doing household chores and shopping in the little shop, this naturally involves being engaged in hobbies and taking care of a pet. Several residents enjoy working in the vegetable garden.

All residents can use the Spa Room and the Sanctuary. This gives them the opportunity to enjoy some peace and quiet, either alone or with companions. A variety of benches and terraces surround Tiendwaert enable residents to enjoy the beautiful landscape.  Family and friends are involved in the day-to-day activities as much as possible. At Tiendwaert there is the option of “rooming in” if intensive care is offered to the resident. All staff are kept abreast of residents’ wishes and together with the family they see to it that these are fulfilled. Thus a wish photo album has been compiled charting all elements of Planetree. This too fulfilled a resident’s wish.  The staff, residents, family, treatment practitioner and team leaders often discuss the appropriate care. Plenty of attention is devoted to openness toward one another, which creates an enjoyable atmosphere and ensures everybody’s talents are appreciated. Even volunteers do their bit in this regard by going the extra mile. And this special attention to the individual is precisely what people come here for.


De Vijverhof is a small unit for 13 residents with psychogeriatric disorders. It is part of a complex that offers individual housing and services (including home health care) for about 150 senior citizens. The unit is divided into two groups (6 and 7) each with its own facilities. It is situated on the ground floor with a private garden and sheltered patio.  The building is located in the small medieval village of Nieuwpoort, part of the community of Liesveld which lies in the middle of a typical Dutch polder area in the so called Groene Hart (“Green Heart”) region of the Netherlands.  The community provides a lot of support in terms of both facilities and voluntary support, knowing that these things are absolute necessary to have and maintain a facility like De Vijverhof in this rural area. There are few shops and therefore bakers, a fisherman, a milkman and butchers often run mobile shops moving from one village to the other. This makes it possible to stay in your own environment when you age and become dependent on care and nursing.  In return, De Vijverhof offers as much medical and home health care services as are needed on a 24/7 schedule. This includes (specialized) visiting nurses, advice, laboratory services and mother and baby care.  There is close cooperation with local family doctors (in the same building) on the basis of mutual support and interest. Living in the “Polder” means a lot of car miles and travelling time for visiting nurses, especially in the evening and at night. Vijverhof is one of six Rivas sites in this “Polder” district, which together form a support network for home health care.

The residents in each group share facilities such as a garden, living room, kitchen and laundry. Besides these things, each of them has his or her own apartment room with his or her own furniture and a bathroom. At the same time they can use other facilities in the building such as a library, restaurant, theatre and meeting room.  The daily program and style of living is “as homely as possible.”  Personal attention plays a significant role in this regard, just as it does in entirely day-to-day activities. Helping residents whenever possible with little tasks such as preparing a warm meal, doing a little bit of laundry and shopping with support of the staff and volunteers preserves the normal life residents usually had prior to coming here.  In addition to these things, there are various activities for the residents, such as trips, games, singing and walking. Four times a year a special eating-out-at-home theme is held.

Planetree Learning Journeys







Planetree encourages health leaders to participate in a learning journey with Planetree staff as well as Planetree affiliates in a variety of settings. A guided tour gives leaders a first-hand experience and an opportunity for a more in-depth question and answer session with staff responsible for implementation. Planetree staff is available to meet with prospective members at their facilities as well.