Rachel Marsala’s Story

“Working in long-term care was the ideal location for me,” says Rachel Marsala.

The St. John’s Home Clinical Lead Dietitian has worked at St. John’s for almost eight years, and she says the residents and her team make her feel fulfilled.

She says she began working at St. John’s “fairly quickly” out of college and the later-in-life care is “rewarding.” Marsala says, “People aren’t coming and going as quickly as they would be in a hospital setting so you have the chance to get to know them.”

“I took a nutrition class at Monroe Community College and that was most interesting to me,” says Marsala.

“Here you can have a relationship with the people you care for,” says Marsala, “I really enjoy the face-to-face interactions.”

Marsala leads a dedicated team of registered dietitians who focus on the comfort and nutrition of St. John’s residents. “I do a lot of administration work, but still get the chance to meet with residents; I am in the dining room from time to time.”

St. John’s Home Dietitian Department: Karen Lenhardt, Rachel Marsala, Nora Hildreth, and Chelsea Walther.

According to Marsala, there is no “typical day.” She says her days vary. “Some days I could be at my desk doing more administrative work, signing off the St. John’s Meadows dining menu, or working with the speech therapy team.”

“Other days I get to do more of the clinical work like performing assessments to best suit the needs of our current and new residents.”

“Our main goal is comfort,” says Marsala. “When you have lived a long life and are in a long-term care community, choice and comfort are important.”

“We are able to make choices every day about what we eat, so if their health allows, our residents should too.”

Marsala says she likes to incorporate the residents’ favorite foods because it is “something they still have control over.”

She says many of the residents are willing to try new food which she says, “is nice to see and good for variety.”

The interaction Marsala has with residents is not the only reason she enjoys coming to work each day. “I have a great team,” she says. “We really help each other out and are flexible.”

“We are a small team, but we are really supportive each other and they have supported me in this new role.”

Marsala came into the role of Clinical Lead Dietitian just over a year ago. “My team and everyone have been great with this change, it is just easy with a team like them.”

She also adds that the flexibility at St. John’s has been beneficial to her work and personal life. “I am a mom now,” says Marsala, “I have two kids, so working at place that is flexible and understands that I have a life outside of work has become very important.”

“I am able to have a nice balance and it is rewarding.”


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