Many Australians receive home and community care services. These services allow people to be independent and continue to live in their own homes.
There are many factors that influence how the government makes policies and allocates funding for services that support older people in the community and their families and carers, including:
The increasing number of older people government has to plan for future support requirements Economic factors: for example, it costs less to support a person living in their own home than it does to pat for them to live in a residential facility government funding may be directed to community care rather than residential care.
Greater life expectancy due to advances in medical treatments and research the number of people over the age of 80 years will double in the next 20 years. The availability of family and carer support for older people living in their own home- where there is no carer support, more government spending is needed.
Policy directions, such as ‘ageing in place’, means certain programs, such as Home and Community Care (HACC), are supported and funded by the government
Home and Community Care Act 1985 (Cth) Sets out law relating to delivery of home and community care services. Ensures all target groups including migrants, those with challenging behaviours and the financially disadvantaged have access to these services. Ensures services are delivered equitably across regions, including rural and remote and to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.
HACC national service standards Go to the following website: http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publ ishing.nsf/Content/hacc-pub_isd_nssi.htm http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publ ishing.nsf/Content/hacc-pub_isd_nssi.htm List down the seven objectives for high- quality service in Home and Community Care. We are going to discuss these objectives and how they affect your work in the HACC sector.
Rights and responsibilities The state you work in may have a HACC statement of rights and responsibilities. This statement aims to ensure clients and service providers are aware of their rights and responsibilities.
Rights An older person has the right to: Be treated with respect and courtesy Have their needs assessed Be informed and be involved in decisions made about their care Receive quality services Make a complaint Have someone represent them (an advocate) Privacy and confidentiality and be able to access all personal information kept about them by the service.
Responsibilities Older people also have some responsibilities to the people who are providing care to them. Older people: Treat staff with respect and courtesy; e.g., by letting them know as soon as possible if they can not keep an appointment Provide a safe work environment for staff and help them to provide services safely; e.g., not smoking while staff are present Take responsibility for the results of any decisions they make.
Community Programs Federal and state governemnts fund a range of programs to support older people who live in the community, and their carers and families. This funding is given to local governments/councils and other services to pay for community care.
A home and community care support worker might: Work for the local council helping older people in their own homes with tasks such as cleaning and personal care. Work on a respite program Deliver meals to older people in their homes. Work in a day centre providing social activities for older people Assist those who served in Australia’s military, war widows and war widowers, with domestic assistance, personal care, home maintenance or respite care.
The various community programs include: The HACC program Department of Veterans’ Affairs services Community care packages
Task Using the handout “Understanding home and community care programs” Complete the work.
Complying with duty of care In any job or role you do in a home and community care environment, there is a basic level of care you are expected to provide. Your clients have the right to expect reasonable care will be taken to avoid harming them, during the course of your job. This is known as your duty of care.
Recognising duty-of-care responsibilities Regardless of your role, you must not put clients or yourself at risk. You must do your work in a way that is safe and maintains the dignity, privacy, confidentiality and independence of the client. Everyone involved in caring for older people is responsible and independently accountable for their actions at all times.
Applying duty of care Your level of authority= In most roles requiring a Cert III qualification, a support worker would be expected to: Work in a way that does not put them, their workmates or clients at risk Treat clients as individuals with the right to make up their own minds Follow instructions provided by the supervisor or workplace Be respectful to clients Arrive and leave work on time Look for and report things that may cause harm
Breaching duty of care-you are breaching your duty of care if you: Fail to meet the expected standards of care Do not abide by the workplace rules; for example you choose to walk a client alone when two people are required. Do not follow a care plan Record an incident untruthfully Fail to record an incident Do an activity without the necessary training or experience Skip important steps in tasks or skill whole tasks when providing care.
Task 1) In two sentences, explain why it is important for you to understand your duty of care. 2) Give two examples of duty-of-care responsibilities when: - Taking an older person shopping - Carrying out personal-care tasks
Understanding ageing in place The Australian government is committed to helping people age in place. This means giving people the help they need to stay at home. It is not only the government that supports this philosophy. Older people too want to stay in their own homes. Most people don’t want to move into aged care homes unless they have to.
To support this approach, the government currently pays for: Care at home provided by local councils, district nurses Allied health (podiatrists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists) Respite care Day centres that provide social activities for older people Case-management services (working with the older person and their family to look at what help they need to stay at home).
Using the ageing-in-place model, workers can: Support older people to carry out their activities of daily living (ADL’s) including grooming, cooking and cleaning by encouraging them and providing aids to help them remain independent. Encourage older people to remain active by helping them take up a hobby; enrolling that at an activity centre or encouraging them to participtate in their own ADLs
Encourage older people to retain their social network of friends and neighbours Provide information about services Work with a case manager to assess the older person and their family on a regular basis to help the older person stay as independent as possible.
Task Write down your thoughts to the following: 1) Why do you think governments all around the world (not just in Australia) have committed to ageing in place? 2) Discuss what you would do if you saw another member of staff not complying with their duty of care.