Home' Australian Ageing Agenda : AAA Jul-Aug 2017 Contents In a market-based system, consumers need up-
to-date and accurate information about facilities
and the sector will need to be committed to
transparency as a whole, Norah says.
In terms of offerings, Norah says a user-pays
system would allow providers to deliver varied
and less prescriptive additionals for consumers.
“I’m not necessarily with the whole sector on
this, but I think deregulation is a good thing,”
“I think that we as providers, as well as the
government, each play a vital roles in ensuring
high quality care is an expectation at ever y aged
In choosing a certain facility, a consumer has
effectively made some of their choices around the
offerings they want to receive, says Norah.
“When you look around the cities in Australia
especially, there’s ample ability and ample competition
to make those choices and make them clearly.”
However, she says she’s unsure whether a
form of individualised payment, like that in home
care, would be practical in residential care.
Estia’s current focus as an organisation is
preparing for a customer-focused future – one
which Norah says is reflective of a new generation
“We have 90 per cent single rooms, would
that have been the case even 10 years ago?
Absolutely not,” she says.
“Twenty years ago the sector was building
for easier nursing, which happens in a four-bed
cubicle as you could see people four times more
often than in a single-bed room. But that’s not
what the consumer wants now.”
Estia is currently examining what it needs to
change in terms of staff numbers and training, as
well the built and social environment to better
meet the needs of future consumers. In September,
Estia will hold a leadership forum, that brings
together business, facility and clinical managers,
where their strategy for the future will be refined.
Going for ward, Norah says aged care
providers will need to ensure that the care they
offer is person-centred and individualised care,
and that they are transparent and keep the
consumer front of mind. n
A great career pathway
Having previously worked as a care worker and a quality and systems
administrator, manager of Estia Health Heidelberg Linda Horvath has carved
out an impressive career in aged care.
A single mother with four children and a Certificate IV in Disability, Linda
started her career in aged care as a personal care assistant in Gippsland.
“Straight away, I loved working in aged care. I found it incredibly rewarding,”
says Linda. “I loved the residents and their stories, and interactions with allied
health workers and GPs. I learned so much and enjoyed going to work every day.”
Linda was soon promoted to manager of the home, a role she held for five
years until she resigned to care for her terminally ill father.
After moving to Melbourne in 2005, Linda decided to return to the job she loved
and took on a personal care role at what would become Estia Health Ringwood –
a role that gave her the flexibility she needed to meet her family obligations.
In 2008 a recurring back injury and resulting surgery saw Linda forced to
have six months off work before returning to light duties.
With the Ringwood facility moving 34 beds from transition care to aged
care, Linda took on the complex compliance documentation role and found
that she enjoyed administration work.
“My next move was assisting our Estia regional director, mainly in a quality
management role. That involved setting up systems and standards across all
Estia homes, travelling a lot to make sure best practice was involved in every
one of our facilities.”
Looking for a new professional challenge, Linda was appointed manager of
Estia Health Heidelberg in 2014.
“It was great to stop travelling and move back into an aged care home
where I could get to know the residents and families well, and make a real
difference,” she says.
“It’s a wonderful place to work. Most of our staff have been here for a long
time, which says something about the warm and welcoming family atmosphere
we’ve created. We want to make sure that our residents, their families and our
staff are all happy to be here.
“Aged care is a great career, one that offers a lot in terms of personal
satisfaction and career progress.”
Contact Estia Health
1300 682 833
357 Camberwell Road, Camberwell, Victoria 3124
03 9811 9777
L4/15 Kensington Street, Kogarah, NSW 2217
Estia’s current focus
is on preparing for a
australianageingagenda.com.au | 39
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