Home' Australian Ageing Agenda : AAA May-Jun 2014 Contents SPONSORED FEATURE
Improving communications in clinical care is another
field where new assistive technologies are contributing to
greater efficiencies. BaptistCare has been using Voicera, a
lightweight, voice-activated messaging device that allows staff
to communicate with each other as well as with residents.
This versatile tool is worn around the neck and comes with an
attached microphone and earpiece.
"Staff can track and monitor residents and check on their
wellbeing without giving false alarms," English says. While
staff in a number of BaptistCare facilities are already using
the system, Griffith will be the first to carry Voicera with all
its capabilities, such as nurse call and in-room communication
where client's rooms have a speaker installed so they can be
easily contacted if necessary. "We are looking at rolling this out
to all our facilities."
BaptistCare is also moving from paper-based record keeping
to electronic recording of client files. After an initial trial that
involved distributing tablet devices to staff in around a third
of the 20 residential facilities the $6 million dollar project, like
Voicera, will eventually be extended to all sites.
The environment quality of a new facility is a consideration
too, not only for the social advantages but the operating benefit
these provide. "When we build a facility to last for 40 years
you plan to make it efficient to help keep costs down. At the
new Griffith facility we have installed a state-of-the-art air
conditioning system that works on the automatic opening of
louvers at different times of the day to distribute air flow. "It not
only reduces costs but keeps cleaner air coming through which is
important especially in a healthcare setting."
Speaking of the recent brand alignment exercise English says
response from staff to the organisation's changes has been fantastic.
"They love the new uniforms and the new colours that give a
modern touch to a 70-year old organisation. What we are hearing is
there is life in the old girl yet but we have another round to go!"
However, one of the best comments came from a team
member: "It is like getting your hair done. Not only does it make
you feel better and look better, but it is still the same you with
the same mission, intent and focus to the organisation. It just
changes the way we are perceived."
For Ross Low the scale of the branding alignment has been
huge for BaptistCare with the significant social challenges of
an increasingly larger ageing population at the forefront of
strategic planning. He emphasises that while the organisation has
undergone a name change the fundamental care has not changed.
"It all comes down to selecting the right people. The message
I have been saying as part of this profile change is keep a positive
attitude and go the extra mile in whatever you do." n
A new voice
CAROLYN KELSHAW has been
appointed to the new role of Executive
Director to represent Baptist Care
Australia in Canberra. Ms Kelshaw will
be responsible for speaking on the
organisation's behalf to government
and media. Ms Kelshaw has extensive
experience as a leader within education,
having held the positions of Director
and Chair of John Wycliffe Education
Association, Executive Officer to the
Deputy Vice Chancellor of the University
of Western Sydney, and CEO of
Christian Education National for five
years during which time she was also
Chair of the Australian Association of
Excellence in dementia care
NEW DATA SHOWS that dementia and Alzheimer's disease are
claiming more than twice as many lives as a decade ago with an
estimated 1.2 million Australians now caring for someone with
dementia. The number of Australians with dementia is projected
to grow to over half a million by 2030. There is an increasing trend
to keeping people with dementia at home and in response to this
BaptistCare, with the assistance of a Federal Government grant,
has launched a program to support family carers of people living
Ross Low believes BaptistCare is breaking new ground with
the 'Stronger Carers' program that provides up to 300 family care
givers a free, six to 10-week tailored in-home coaching program
and respite support.
"We believe what we are doing with carers is different and
hopefully with significant ramifications for the industry going forward
and ultimately be implemented as part of the dementia process."
Program manager, Marleina Fahey, says the program supports
carers to care effectively for someone with dementia living at home
and is the only program available that gives in-home coaching for
carers. "At the moment carers can access a range of services but
none provide tailored coaching in the home."
It helps carers develop skills in dealing with activities, behaviour,
communication, relaxation and stress management as well as
offer advice on other support services. Another component to the
program is the 'Care for a Cuppa Cafés' that give participants the
opportunity to introduce carers to other carers and introduce those
with dementia to others with dementia in an informal setting.
Fahey says the aim of the program is to delay transition to or
support that transition to residential aged care and feedback to date
has been positive.
The program, currently operating in 39 Sydney metropolitan
areas, began in October 2013 and will presently run until March
2015. It is being funded by the Australian Government under the
Aged Care Service Improvement and Healthy Ageing Grants Fund
and will be evaluated by Alzheimer's Australia NSW.
Carers interested in participating in the program can contact
Marleina Fahey on 02 90232708 or at email@example.com
For information about BaptistCare visit: www.baptistcare.org.au
www.australianageingagenda.com.au | 45
Links Archive AAA Jul-Aug 2014 AAA Jan-Feb 2014 Navigation Previous Page Next Page