Author: Editor

Funding sought for new project to improve basic care of elderly in hospitals

Crowd funding is being sought for a research project that will improve care of elderly patients in hospital in order to prevent common, costly complications such as UTIs and pressure ulcers. Dr Kasia Bail, a registered nurse and Assistant Professor at the University of Canberra, is leading the project and says simple interventions of basic nursing care are under-prioritised in hospitals. In her PhD, Dr Bail calculated that failing to maintain basic nursing care of elderly patients in NSW hospitals alone costs $225 million per year in extra length of stay. She is now seeking to find ways to reduce the four common complications that result from what she describes as a “Failure to Maintain”: urinary tract infection, pressure ulcers, pneumonia and delirium. “Failure to Maintain is the inadequate delivery of fundamental nursing care to a complex older person in hospital,” she said. “The term gives a name to the challenges in providing simple interventions such as mobility, skin care, hydration, nutrition and communication in complex environments like hospitals, to complex patients such as people with dementia,” she said. “Sometimes these conditions are called ‘geriatric syndromes’, but many of these conditions are preventable. Older, complex people are more susceptible to these conditions; my work is to highlight that with increased risk comes increased responsibility of the healthcare service to mitigate that risk.” “We know that when demand for nursing care exceeds...

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Aged Care Complaints Commissioner reappointed

Aged Care Complaints Commissioner, Ms Rae Lamb, has been reappointed for a second term to January 2020. The three year term follows what has been a 12-month trial period of an independent Commissioner responsible for managing aged care complaints, which Ms Lamb took on at the start of this year. In a statement about the reappointment, Minister for Health and Aged Care, Sussan Ley, said the Government has been working hard to reform aged care and give consumers greater choice and control over their aged care services. “We are rightly proud of the Australian aged care system. Internationally, it...

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New social housing complex to meet needs of homeless older women

A new social housing complex will be built in inner Sydney, in response to rising rates of homeless older women who can no longer afford the private rental market. The NSW Government will spend $7.4 million on the new 20-apartment development in Woolloomooloo, which has been designed specifically for vulnerable older women. NSW Social Housing Minister, Brad Hazzard, said partnerships between not-for-profit and private sectors were critical to delivering important services to vulnerable people. The most recent official data of the number of people who are homeless in each state is from the 2011 Census, which reported 28,190 people as being homeless in NSW alone. About 7 per cent were over the age of 65. This number is expected to be much higher in the next Census data due to be released in April 2017, given the drastic increase in private rental accommodation costs over the last five years in and around Sydney. Under the NSW Government’s 10 year strategy to deliver more social and affordable housing, there is a focus on the supply and quality of housing for older people, a spokesperson for the Department of Family and Community Services (FACS) said. Architects from FACS developed the design with pre-construction advice from Women’s Housing Company on the specific design needs of single women, and advice from the Government Architect. It is expected to be completed by mid...

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