What will residential aged care look like in a decade?

According to Bryan, it is this paradigm shift to person-centred care, which is the key to meaningful ageing.

There has been a focus on preference-driven care in community care, and now in residential aged care the same shift is set to occur.

“Over the next decade, people living in aged care will have greater autonomy to determine how money and resources are delivered for their care.

“Listening to and delivering on their wishes is a direction we have already committed to, and one that I see being implemented sector-wide,” he said.

In economic terms, this change is about transitioning scarce resources away from government and provider decision-makers and into the hands of the consumer.

“They will be much more responsible for directing that funding. And they will do a better job of it.”

The Positive Wellbeing Model of Care used across our residential aged care services is underpinned by a comprehensive understanding of the personal preferences of people living in aged care.

“The most exciting transformation will be a change in culture. A move away from aged care based on a medical model to a focus on people living life to the full.”

Accompanying this move to person-centred care is a change in the way that staff talk to and engage with people living in aged care, focusing on the individual rather than their illness or disability.

For the aged care industry, it will be about finding out how to make an individual’s life enjoyable, comfortable and abundant.

These changes will have implications and challenges for the workforce, and strong changes to recruitment may be required, Bryan said.

“Working in aged care has historically been dismissed as less attractive than a fast-paced hospital setting. A key change for our industry is understanding and embracing the social benefits of work and making a positive difference to someone’s life,” he said.

“No longer can task-related responses be definitive criteria for employment. Yes, you will still need to know how to change a bed or clean a room, but the focus must be on the person first, not the task.

“This purpose and passion is what we need to get right in our workforce culture.

“The future in caring and supporting older people must include maintaining, and even building, capabilities and potential, not simply managing decline.”

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Posted June 8, 2017 in Networking blog