Home' Australian Ageing Agenda : AAA Mar-Apl 2013 Contents Richard O'Leary - Event Photography
ITAC conference 2012
Technology, in many forms, is increasingly critical to efficiency and
sustainability in the new aged services paradigm. ITAC 2013 is the
place to get smarter or just get started, writes Natasha Egan.
Technology smarts 2013
How quickly things change.
Once the domain of the early
adopter, IT strategies have
become core, necessary
elements of every aged care
services business plan. Consumer-directed
care (CDC), price reporting and quality
indicators are just a few new reasons to
have your technology house in order.
But according to Aged Care Industry
IT Council (ACIITC) member, Rod Young,
aged care is generally not up to speed.
"Some operators are quite sophisticated
but lots of the rest of the industry really
are well behind the eight ball," he says.
"Providers who think they will
introduce a consumer-directed care
framework in the future without [the] IT
support needed - to be regularly updating
and providing budget and costing details
to the client - are fooling themselves."
MODERN AGED CARE
Despite this, Young says there's a lot
of technology already in use by early
adopters, which has been proven to
provide much greater efficiency and
financial security and accuracy.
In home care, Young says, high
interface devices that support care staff
are increasingly standard. These include
hand held tablets and other devices for all
field staff enabling communication back
to central repositories for clinical care;
the ability to have clinical data uploaded
to systems remotely and for staff to use
Google maps, for example, to determine
the most efficient route to carry out the
day's client visits.
In residential care, Young says
the introduction of the electronically
enabled Aged Care Funding Instrument
(ACFI) has driven many organisations
to introduce clinical care programs that
feed into their ACFI claiming process. The
result is a simplified stream of information
and more accurate claiming.
"As managers, we should now be trying
to look at how we better integrate our
various software packages," Young says.
Good examples include clinical
software which feeds into the planning
process and automated benchmarking
services in financial systems.
As providers become required to
publish data on government websites such
as 'My Aged Care', systems that automate
reporting and information delivery will take
the pain out of the process, Young says.
The ACIITC, which is a joint initiative by
Leading Age Services Australia (LASA) and
Aged and Community Services Australia
(ACSA), will launch an IT roadmap at
its Information Technology in Aged Care
(ITAC) conference in Melbourne in May.
The roadmap will set out an IT vision
for the sector for the next five-to-10 years
and outline what's needed to support the
industry to achieve it.
It will assist providers incorporate
an IT strategy into their strategic plans
for the future while also convincing
government that this is the strategic
direction for aged care information
technology for the future.
ITAC 2013 HIGHLIGHTS
Elsewhere at the two-day ITAC conference,
the daily presentations, live demonstrations
and concurrent sessions will highlight
the current and future developments
for information technology in aged care.
Following are some of the highlights.
Brian Prince, chief technology evangelist
-- Cloud at Microsoft in the US, travels the
world championing gaming. He will offer
lessons from the gaming community, which
is renowned for strategies that get people
activated, engaged, involved and hooked --
one level at a time.
Telehealth pioneer Professor Len Gray,
director of the Centre for Online Health,
University of Queensland, will discuss how
technology is changing communication
methods and carry out a live telehealth
consultation from the stage.
Matilda the robot will be there,
accompanied by Professor Rajiv Kholsa,
director of research at the Centre for
Computers, Communications and Social
Innovation, La Trobe Business School. He
both asks and answers the question: are
assistive devices liberating or limiting?
The pros and cons of assistive
technologies, including the unexpected
emotional benefits of a robotic vacuum
cleaner, will further be explored across
several other presentations.
There is also a series of talks looking
at ehealth and the implementation of the
personally controlled electronic health
records (PECHR) framework, plus an
exploration of how PECHR will work in
Twelve concurrent sessions each day,
will address the latest smart technology
for modern aged care; the benefit of an
IT business solution; and how community
care will be changed by consumer-
centric service delivery and home-based
technology solutions. n
AAA will be reporting live from ITAC 2013:
May 1-2, Crown Conference Centre,
For more conference news, turn to p69.
The technology main event
36 | MARCH -- APRIL 2013 | AAA
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