Having struggled myself at times as an Aged Care Placement Specialist to place my clients in a suitable aged care facility that supports their particular needs I fully appreciate the effort Aged Care Admissions Manager Raechel Goldsmith is taking
to change the way in which people are accepted into the UnitingCare, Wesley, Port Adelaide facility.
“We’ve had quite a few successful placements where people haven’t been able to be placed elsewhere,” Raechel says “We’ve reviewed them, we’ve learnt what their triggers are, why they were this way, looked at them in the wider picture and then brought them into our aged care with the right systems in place. We are looking at the person as a person and we are planning the admission, rather than it being reactionary, so people are set up to succeed.”
She explains that so often the placement of an elderly person into an aged care facility is reactionary. I am only too well aware of this. In many cases the elderly person becomes ill, they go into hospital and then are assessed as needing fulltime care in a facility. The hospital needs their bed and the family are under pressure to find a suitable home for their loved one in a hurry. It is certainly not an ideal situation.
I am usually able to find the right aged care facility that meets the needs of my clients because I know the facilities well and have a good relationship with the Managers. But if Raechel’s PACE It initiative (Planed Aged Care Entry) was implemented in all aged care facilities it would make it so much easier for those seeking full time care and their families.
Making sure that it’s the right bed for the right person is Raechel’s mantra. She explains that behavioural support around dementia and mental health, proximity to family and friends, and ensuring staff have the right training and expertise are all crucial to ensure a residents’ needs are met.
Some of the elements I look for when helping a client find an aged care facility, as well as those mentioned by Raechel, when helping to find a suitable aged care facility may include: a double room with a double bed for couples, a facility that allows pets for those with a close animal companion, stimulating activities, good onsite facilities like hairdressers, cafes and spaces that embrace visitors, peaceful outlooks and gardens for reflective time or wifi connectivity. Each person is different and has their particular set of needs to live comfortably and contentedly; these should definitely be met wherever they reside.