Aged care and how it is delivered occupies the focus of many individuals, including peak bodies, commercial and not-for-profit residential aged care providers and community services agencies, health practitioners, care workers, politicians, architects, researchers and academics, to name but a few. The challenge is to build modern architecturally smart, flexible communities that incorporate the needs of the healthy and those with multiple complex health conditions and which promote living a meaningful connected life with family, friends and the community that matters to each individual. No doubt such clever social innovation will come at a cost, which unfortunately may be far too high for the majority of Australians.
Virtual reality or VR has entered our language and it seems may also enter in many facets of our lives, now and in the future. Will it ever replace the power of human contact? Perhaps not, however it may enable your loved one in another country, to share experiences with their grandchildren which enables to keep the thread of connection alive and in turn assists the older person to maintain greater cognitive function.
Music plays a pivotal role in our lives. Each generation embraces the artists of that time, as poet laureates, expressing the social condition of that era. We are connected and disconnected to others by our choice of music. For some of us, music is like breathing. We listen to it daily and without it, there is a profound sense of emptiness. Building a playlist is a relatively easy task with the help of software with Spotify or iTunes. It begs the question. What tracks would you have on your playlist?
Australia has strict staff ratios for childcare. Is it only fair and reasonable to expect that is the case with any group of individuals who are vulnerable and at risk. It is also only fair and reasonable to protect nurses and individual support workers when they are managing individuals who may have aggressive behaviours that led to altercations and injury in the workplace. We all know that this industry needs more highly trained and compassionate workers.
It has long been a concern of many that younger people with disability do not have adequate care options. This view is shared by Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Luke, Bo’sher of the Summer Foundation and reflected in the June 2018 National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) report card.
The needs of Australia’s First Peoples, and the gaps, roadblocks and barriers experienced by older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, is the focus of a landmark report, released on 14 June at a Roundtable event held in Canberra.
The report, Assuring equity of access and quality outcomes for older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples: What needs to be done, was developed by the Australian Association of Gerontology (AAG).
The Federal Minister for Aged Care, the Hon. Key Wyatt, has announced the proposed implementation of recommendations from the Carnell-Paterson Review, including a new independent Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission, and a Serious Incident Response Scheme.
The objectives are to ensure that consumers are able to view publicly available ratings of aged care providers, against quality standards and that serious complaints are handed in a judicious manner.
It is difficult to quantify the extent of elder abuse, as many of it occurs within private homes, and is unreported for a variety of reasons including shame and strained family dynamics.
This is another reason why it is essential that those most vulnerable are cared for by high-quality trained support workers, employed by agencies that actively screen their employees and operate in an accountability framework.
For many people, moving into a residential aged care facility, coincides with a reduced capacity for independence. Simply put, an individual is no longer safe living in their home, and needs care and accommodation. It is how care and accommodation is offered, that is under scrutiny. Two papers recently published in the Australian Medical Journal debate the ‘ideal model’.