Addressing the ageing system in Aged Care

 

There is no question that Australia’s population is ageing, and many Aged Care and Healthcare providers are struggling to cope with the new challenges that this brings. Combining this chronic issue with more acute pressures including Covid-19, a Royal Commission into Aged Care, increased consumer needs, and intense Media scrutiny & reporting, where does that leave a system so reliant on historical processes and structures?

Certainly, the aged care system as we know it is not sustainable and its capacity to grow and meet the rapidly changing demand is at cross-roads.

This increased scrutiny and subsequent recommendations resulting from the Royal Commission has brought pressure for both Public and Private providers to increase and improve client services while at the same time reducing costs. This apparent paradox can only be solved by unlocking digital technologies with the potential to transform, improve, and enhance aged care services, access to medicine, support structures all the while reducing costs.

Humanising healthcare is critical, and technology plays an important role in bringing dignity to the Australian system.

Recent government changes to the funding model have also meant a consumer-driven market for aged care services that will encourage competition and drive more significant technological innovation within the sector.  The use of technology in aged care services will drive the sector towards a more market-based system as consumers select their Age Care providers based on the mix of services they provide.

This was recognised by the Australian Federal Government Aged Care Roadmap (2016), which called for an agile aged care sector with core standards regulated by the federal government.  Aged Care providers must also survive in a new compliance-driven world where they are measured against Government enforced standards.  Aged care providers will now be forced to adopt and augment technology solutions to collect and report the data required to ensure they remain compliant.

Insights from the Royal Commission recommendations highlighted several areas that Aged Care and Health providers should consider:

  • Lowering IT costs. Moving to more agile and cheaper cloud services, thereby allowing an increase investment in new digital platforms.
  • Telehealth. More and more medical consultations are being conducted via digital technologies, allowing clients to get the best support in remote locations and for those with mobility issues.
  • Mobile Workforce. Workers in the Aged Care industry often use mobile devices to support people who are choosing to stay in their homes longer. It is now critical that Aged Care and Health workers have access to ‘real time’ or ‘near real-time’ data.
  • Workforce Management. The recommendations include upskilling the Aged Care workforce and managing training and onboarding of staff to improve safety and confidence in a system that has failed to meet the expectations society has for the care of our aging population.

At CDRU, our experienced team are proud to have worked alongside numerous aged care providers to select and implement technology solutions to deliver high quality, efficient and effective services.

Our team have worked closely with both public and private health providers in Australia and can leverage this expertise to provide tailored solutions to meet the needs of an industry on the bring of modernisation. Focusing on ensuring a sound business-as-usual environment whilst introducing and embedding services across organisational and technology strategy development, application and infrastructure assessments, and end-to-end digital transformation.

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