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Understanding the issues facing older people and their carers.  As a support worker, you need to understand issues facing your clients and help them.

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Presentation on theme: "Understanding the issues facing older people and their carers.  As a support worker, you need to understand issues facing your clients and help them."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Understanding the issues facing older people and their carers.  As a support worker, you need to understand issues facing your clients and help them in the best possible way. You must always be tolerant and understand the individual needs of your client.

3 Physical Changes.  People’s bodies change as they get older.  Muscles lose strength; bones break easily; lose flexibility; may lose balance; sight and hearing deteriorate; skin becomes thinner and can break or tear easily; gain or lose weight; and general fitness may decrease.

4 Support Workers can help older manage these changes people by:  Encouraging older people to exercise  Watching for things that may make older people trip or fall  Helping older people move around safely  Making sure aids used by older people work  Assisting older people to look after glasses or contact lenses  Watching for changes in how older people move  Telling someone if there is a problem.

5 Cognitive changes:  Sometimes people find thinking more difficult as they age.  Thought processes may be slower; find it harder to remember names of people and places; may forget what they did yesterday or where they need to go; may lose their way; or could get upset and angry.  Changes to an older person’s thinking may be due to dementia, which causes progressive loss of memory and thinking skills. However, not all cognitive changes are due to dementia.

6 Support workers can help older people manage cognitive changes by:  Writing reminder notes  Putting appointments on calendars  Talking about important details  Writing down names and phone numbers  Wearing name tags  Introduce themselves clearly  Participate in activities

7 Support workers should be aware of things that upset their clients; it is also the support workers responsibility to watch for changes in an older person’s ability to think. Older people may require more help if their cognitive ability changes. It may not be safe for them to stay at home. They may need someone to watch them closely. They may need help with more tasks. Support workers need to record changes or problems and report these if there is concern.

8 What are some of the social changes that an older person may experience?

9 Did you list these?  Find it harder to socialise with friends; find it harder to meet new people; older friends may die or family may move away; getting out to do things or staying in touch with people may get harder.

10  What can support workers do to help older people manage social changes?

11 Did you list these?  Encouraging phone calls to friends and family  Driving older people to activities  Finding out about social groups and activities  Helping older people write letters and emails  Talking with older people about photos  Respecting privacy.

12  Some older people may be upset about changes to their social lives. They may become lonely and depressed. However, just because they are feeling a bit sad does not mean they are depressed. There may be a good reason for feeling sad. Depression must be assessed by a doctor. A support worker cannot diagnose or treat depression.  If you notice any changes in behaviour (sad, sleeping a lot more) that worries you, talk to a superviser.

13 Family Changes: List the ways a family can change.

14 Did you list these?  Children grow up And have their own families; people move away; people get busy with their lives and may spend less time with an older person; Family members may not like being carers or find it hard to be; people may not have the skills needed to be a carer; they feel uncomfortable.

15  As families change, an older person may need help from other places such as respite care, which gives unpaid carers a rest by providing care for a short time. Services like this can help older people stay at home longer.

16  Watch “Discovering Psychology-Maturing and Ageing” on ClickView

17 Help with personal care: What kind of personal care help might an older person need?

18 Did you list these:  Showering and toileting  Brushing teeth or shaving  Putting on makeup  Getting dressed

19 Helping older people with personal care tasks may present difficulties because most people prefer to look after their own bodies. Support workers can help older people in lots of ways with their personal care tasks. Always make sure you:  Ask what help is needed  Ask how the older person likes things done  Remember people are different  Are respectful and polite  Help private tasks to stay private  Check the older person is safe  Tell someone if there is a problem.

20 Task Imagine you are talking to Mr Jenkins about his personal care. You need to know how he likes his personal care tasks to be done. Make some notes about what you would ask him so you can learn how he likes to:  Have his hair washed  Have his teeth cleaned  Get dressed.

21 Transport help You will need to identify the client’s transport needs. After doing this, you may need to:  Plan how you will get there  Work out long the trip will take  Arrange transport for the client  Drive the client yourself  Help them in and out of the car.

22  Always make sure you can d things safely. Don’t take risks. If you are unsure about the best way to get your client to their appointments, check with your supervisor.

23 Loss and grief: What is grief? How or when might an older person experience grief?

24  Grief is the sadness people feel when they lose someone or something important to them.  Reasons for experiencing grief: Partner is ill or needs to move out of the home; partner may die; family member/s might move away; when older person loses skills they used to have (eg, aren’t able to move as easily or lost independence).

25 Support workers need to listen to their clients so they know if they are sad or grieving. Never make the client feel bad about their feelings. Help them to be positive. Talk to them about the friends and family they still have. Remember, its okay to be sad sometimes.

26 Task 1. Think of some of the signs of grieving. We are going to brainstorm them on the board. 2. Complete the case study of Mavis and Archie.

27 Attitudes in Society. Many people enjoy talking and being with older people. They believe it is great having older people in the community. However, others think older people should stop work as soon as they are 65 years old. They believe older people should go into aged care homes when they are old. Some people believe older people cannot do all the things a younger person can do.

28 Support workers should:  Encourage older people to continue doing things that interest them.  Support older people to travel to social centres  Explain to family members and others the value of the older person participating in activities.

29 Family carers: Some families you will work with will be close. They will want to be informed about the wellbeing of their relative, and will want to be involved in their care. Other older people will not be close to their families, they may not get along or even see each other. Remember all older people are different.

30 Some families may be upset if something happens to their older relative, or if the relative can’t do things. They may be worried that they are getting sick, or they may not understand what is happening or may not even understand the care needs of the older person.

31 Aged care support workers can help families by:  Remembering all families are different  Listening when families want to talk  Explaining changes simply and clearly  Not sharing private information  Suggesting respite care to give families a break  Making sure families get a real rest and time away when providing respite care  Using the communication book to share ideas with the family.

32 Knowing about aged care laws and rules Important laws and rules:  Aged Care Act 1997 (Cth)  State legislation  Residential care manual  Privacy Act 1988 (Cth)  Occupational Health and Safety Act 1991 (Cth)  Other relevant legislation

33 Aged Care Act 1997 (Cth)  This legislation applies to all services including aged care homes, community care services, transitional and respite programs. This act provides guidelines for how care is given and ensures quality service is provided to older people by:

34  Ensuring everyone has equal access to care  Ensuring care is not refused due to someone’s: - Racial background or language - Lifestyle - Finances - Locality  Describing what aged care services need to do  Looking after people using aged care services  Giving respite to carers  Making sure there is a range of services to suit all needs  Helping older people enjoy the same rights as others  Helping people age where they want to (ageing in place)

35  The Aged Care Act is a legal document. Your workplace will interpret the requirements of this act in its guidelines, policies and procedures. To ensure you are complying with the requirements of this act, you must do what your supervisor tells you and follow you workplace policies and procedures.

36 State legislation Task:  Search the ACT Health website www.health.act.gov.au www.health.act.gov.au  Look for any policies relating to aged care practice.  Note down what the document is called and what it tells the worker to do, in general terms.

37 Residential care manual This book describes how the Australian government (with help of the state governments) expect aged care homes to be run. It is based on the Aged Care Act 1997. It explains who needs to do what in an aged care home. It helps managers and workers understand what the government wants. It explains what people working in aged care homes need to know.

38 Task 1. Using the internet, access the website: www.health.gov.au. www.health.gov.au 2. In the search bar type: Residential care manual 3. Choose the Australian governments Residential care Manual for 2009-edition 1. 4. Choose the PDF file. 5. Choose a section of information that you would like to know more about and summarise the main points.

39 Privacy Act 1988 (Cth)  This legislation protects all personal information handled by businesses. Attached to this legislation are the ten national privacy principles, which set the standard for handling private information.

40 The national privacy principles relate to:  Collection  Use and disclosure  Data quality  Data security  Openness  Access and correction  Identifiers  Anonymity  Transborder data flows  Sensitive information

41 Occupational Health and Safety Act 1991 (Cth)  The occupational Health and Safety Act 1991 (Cth) applies to all workplaces. This legislation protects workers from injury or illness. The act outlines the level of responsibility workers and employers must take to ensure their safety and the safety of others.

42 Other relevant legislation  Age Discrimination Act 2004 (Cth)  Home and Community Care Act 1985 (Cth)  Veteran’s Entitlements Act 1986 (Cth)  Disability Services Act 1986 (Cth)  Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth)  Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act 1986 (Cth)  Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth)  Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth)


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