New Resource for Residential Care Facilities

By Petrina Smith
Tuesday, 17 February, 2015

A new resource launched by researchers from the University of Western Australia's Centre for Health and Ageing is designed to assist people living and working in residential care facilities.
The Towards Organisational Culture Change (TOrCCh) resource aims to inspire change within an organisationby providing a step-by-step course of action for staff to follow, from the first realisation that change is needed through all steps of implementation.
Associate Professor Christopher Etherton-Beer, from UWA’s School of Medicine and Pharmacology, said, with current projections indicating that older people will represent 24 per cent of the Australian population in 2056, residential care is a key issue.
“Despite the opportunities for many older people to enjoy productive and healthy longer lives, population ageing will present residential care facilities with unprecedented care challenges,” he said.
Associate Professor Etherton-Beer, a geriatrician and project chief investigator, said previous research had identified a need for organisational culture change, which impacted on the well-being of residents and staff in a residential care environment.
“We began to address this gap in our knowledge and so we developed this resource based on the evidence we found,” Associate Professor Etherton-Beer said. “We launched this resource to assist staff in residential care facilities to make things better. The guide is designed to influence culture, emphasising improved communication processes and we anticipate that this will improve residents’ well-being and staff satisfaction.
“For all organisations changing culture is a challenge but these resources have made it easier.”
The TOrCCh project was funded by the Federal Government’s Department of Social Services under the Encouraging Better Practice in Aged Care funding initiative. The resources are freely available for download at WACHA.

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