CEO News May 2019

Dear friends,

On reviewing the details of the April Budget, I came across this article from our peak body Aged Care Services Australia, which summarises how I see the state of the Aged Care industry at this time. “In recent times, the Federal Government has responded to increased scrutiny of aged care with a number of compliance and regulatory initiatives, but the hard reality is that so far, we’ve really only seen stop gaps.”

Within the next decade we’re going to need big reforms in response to the challenges and opportunities presented by our ageing nation. The Royal Commission is helping to bring the debate on aged care forward 10 years to exactly where it needs to be. Now, we need the entire Australian community engaged in a discussion about what kind of care we want to provide and how to fund it sustainably, because there is currently a mismatch between the needs and expectations of Australians and what aged care providers are funded to deliver.

The longer-term issues and challenges of aged care in Australia are the responsibility of everyone – providers, families and government. There is an urgent need to respond to the growing waiting list for Home Care Packages that is leaving thousands of older Australians without the care they need, and we must address the sustainability of residential care services.

The next round of hearings by the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety (ACRC) will commence in Sydney on Monday 6 May. The hearing will run from 6-8 and 13-17 May.

The public hearing will inquire into:

  • The perspective and experience of people in residential aged care and people living with dementia, and their family and carers;
  • Quality and safety in residential aged care, particularly for people living with dementia;
  • The use of restrictive practices in residential aged care;
  • The extent to which the current aged care system meets the needs of people in residential aged care; and
  • Good practice care for people living with dementia, particularly in the context of residential aged care.

I will continue to keep you informed of information from the Commission as I am made aware of it.

As the winter months approach, can I remind everyone to be extra vigilant about coming into MACS if you are feeling unwell or have cold or flu like symptoms.  As you can appreciate any form of infection can go through the facility quickly regardless of the very best of infection control practices and we do want to ensure that our Residents are not exposed to any unnecessary “germs”.  For those of you at home, please take extra care to stay warm and drink plenty of fluids during the winter months.

May will see us focusing on;

Standard 6 – feedback and complaints. 

Source: Australian Aged Care Quality Agency website www.aacqa gov.au
The use of this image does not constitute an endorsement of MACS’ activities by the AACQA

We have always be very open here at MACS in dealing with complaints and strongly encourage you to tell us when things haven’t gone as well as they should have.  All we ask is that this is done in a respectful manner which will ensure the best possible outcome for everyone. Any complaint that is received will be followed up and the complainant will receive feedback on action taken unless they have made the complaint anonymously or have requested that no feedback is required.  Having said that, we also like to hear about the “good things” that happen at MACS and there are many. We have ‘postcards’ designed for this purpose which are displayed and available around the facility and also through our Well-being  Co-coordinators. Please feel free to send it to us or give it to a staff member with your feedback on what we have done well.  Working in aged care is hard and staff and volunteers do what they do because they love their work and love to care.  Providing them with a compliment makes such a difference to our day.

A decision has been made to postpone the Jubilee Dinner Dance that was scheduled for Saturday 11 May at The Pier in Geelong. A new date has been set for Friday 6 December at the same venue and same cost. Invitations will be re-issued later in the year. This function will be the finale of our celebrations for our 25 years of service and I look forward to celebrating this occasion with many of you.

Warm regards,

Joy

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