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How Cooks Make a Difference In Healthcare
Photo of Al Wilson, Cook from New Castle Health & Rehabilitation
Each day, cooks work behind the scenes to make delicious meals for the residents at long term care communities and rehabilitation centers. There are many food items that cooks prepare each day, from main courses to special desserts for activities and celebrations.
Today, we’re highlighting two of Saber Healthcare’s best cooks: Tyrone Brown, a Chef at Slate Belt Health and Rehabilitation, and Al Wilson, a Cook at New Castle Health & Rehabilitation Center.
Photo of Tyrone Brown working in the kitchen at Slate Belt Health & Rehabilitation
Tell us about your background
Brown has a long career to get where he is today as a chef. He originally started out as a dietary aide for a hospital and worked his way to a chef role. He mastered skills along the way such as cooking for fine dining and worked at a few different places until he moved to Pennsylvania.
“I enjoy working for Slate Belt Health and Rehabilitation, and I have been here ever since I applied. Saber has great opportunity for growth, and I feel as though I will be able to continue to climb the ladder here,” Brown said.
Wilson used to work at a competitor, and he was one of seven cooks. He loved his job but sought out growth opportunities, so he decided to apply to New Castle Health & Rehabilitation Center.
“I really enjoy the fact that in my role, I’ve been able to advance my career,” Wilson told us.
Tell us about your role
“I have cooked breakfast, lunch, and dinners, but I mainly handle dinners. I also prep food for our dietary aides to use the next day. I supervise the staff and ensure that we are reaching the productivity levels we need,” Brown said.
“I cook breakfast and lunch for the residents. They like the meals, and I enjoy working here because it makes my day better,” Wilson mentioned.
What qualifications did you need to obtain to work as a cook in healthcare?
“You need to be certified as well as possess a culinary background. I had to be qualified in order to take on this position,” Brown explained.
“I had to attend culinary school and learned from the other cooks that I was under. I was taught trades from different cooks along the way,” Wilson said.
What is your favorite part about your job?
“Making sure that the residents are happy and fed. We can go to a restaurant and leave if we don’t like the service, but here they can’t do that. The food should be made the right way the first time,” Brown said.
“When they come back and tell me how good the food was. I enjoy hearing the compliments,” Wilson answered.
What challenges do you face as a cook?
“Every day is a challenge. We not only have to feed the residents but also make sure they get what they asked for. Their day will always start with what they eat, and from there they will go on about their schedule such as attending therapy,” Brown commented.
“Sometimes it can be challenging to put recipes together that taste right. We always have to try different ideas until we get it,” Wilson told us.
Name something positive you’ve experienced in your role
“I really enjoy working alongside our dietitian, Beth. She’s a wonderful person and very easygoing. The staff in the whole building is decent, and everyone cares about the residents. If it wasn’t for the residents, we wouldn’t be where we are now,” Brown said.
“I enjoy being the number one cook here because it makes me feel happy. I love working the morning shift every day,” Wilson answered.
What is your advice to people aspiring to work in your field?
“This is a great career to be in! You have to love what you do because if you don’t, you won’t do it to your full capacity. I recommend that you educate yourself on everything, from baking to sautéing. You must have a passion for this field,” Brown said.
“When you cook, you have to pay attention and do the work according to the recipe. Everything must always taste good no matter what dish you’re making. Your presentation also means the most out of everything because it’s what people see,” Wilson told us.
Shout out to our cooking team!
Here at Saber Healthcare, we’re grateful for the work our cooks and chefs put in to make the meals for the residents. Each day, our cooking team works to create and serve food that looks and tastes great. Oftentimes our teams will go above and beyond, creating special meals for activities or desserts whenever needed.
“In everything, I try to be dedicated, honest, humble, and respectful. It goes a long way,” Brown mentioned.
“I love when the residents tell me the food tastes great. I like to see a smile on their face when they eat our meals,” Wilson said.
Here at Saber Healthcare, we believe in taking steps to make sure our residents meet their nutritional goals. Our dietary team consistently works to develop and create menus that contain delicious food that meet our residents’ daily vitamin and mineral needs.
Saber Healthcare is an organization dedicated to providing consultant services to long term care providers. This article is for informational purposes and is not meant to be seen as professional advice. Please consult with a medical expert before relying on the information provided.