Innovation Challenge paves way for personalised advance care planning

A new online tool has been developed to help consumers create their own advance care directives and other protective documentation to guide personalised health care.

IRT announced the successful development and trial of the online tool called ExSitu, which was created by two employees participating in the organisation’s 2017 Innovation Challenge.

IRT’s Executive General Manager Strategy, Sam McFarlane said IRT’s 10 week Innovation Challenge was launched in 2017 to encourage employees to submit their ideas for the reinvention of support services, care experiences and housing solutions for an ageing Australia.

“Passionate about empowering people to steer their own decision-making April Creed and Rebecca Glover responded to the call and pitched their idea for ExSitu,” Mr McFarlane said.

“They devised the idea in response to a gap they saw in service provision, identified through their 40 years of combined nursing experience in the aged-care industry.

“We were impressed because it aims to help facilitate lasting, positive change in the delivery of authentic consumer directed care, and this is important because it has the potential to not just help every one of our residents, but all older Australians in the broader community.”

April and Rebecca’s idea went on to be built and tested with the support of IRT’s Innovation team and the University of Wollongong iAccelerate Start Program.

“With our support and encouragement, the women have left their full time roles to dedicate their time to building their business as Intrapreneurs at iAccelerate.”

The tool is designed to care for a person holistically and deliver a tailored experience, taking into account the person’s clinical and medical requirements as well as their values and beliefs.

“It’s common for people not to plan for the later stages of life and when the need arises their voice can be lost in the system,” Ms Creed said.

“What’s unique about ExSitu is how it helps people create documents that reflect their own voice and values to guide the direction of their healthcare. In an online interactive process, it helps people navigate difficult conversations about the later stages of life, recording their core values within advance care directives and other protective documentation that can be reviewed, signed and shared via ExSitu.

“Ultimately it will help family and friends make better decisions for the ones they love when they can no longer speak for themselves in the advanced stages of dementia or palliative care.”

ExSitu is currently being trialled by IRT’s homecare and residential care divisions and is soon to commence a trial with RMB Lawyers. Find out more at


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