Need to find quality residential care?
The solution is simple - discuss your family requirements with an experienced residential care advisory and placement service. We can save you time, money and reduce your stress level.
What are the steps required to make a successful placement? How can you be sure that the home that you choose is the best available? A complete understanding of the care, accommodation and lifestyle services available requires detailed research and takes time. Placing your elderly loved one into an aged care home should never be left to chance. We have done the research and have been through the process many times, and you will receive the benefit of our knowledge and experience.
Choosing from alternative aged care homes?
It takes more than browsing an online directory or reading glossy brochures. In reality the accurate assessment of quality care, accommodation and lifestyle services requires detailed research and can be time-consuming.
Choosing between the available aged care homes and making the right decision can be daunting. What is the quality of care at your preferred aged care home? Are there worthwhile activity programs established? Is the aged care home within the family budget? Do you take an immediate vacancy just because it is there, or will we forever regret that hasty decision?
Make an informed decision about residential care
Aged Care Connect has been actively involved with helping families with residential care since 2002. It is hard to surpass this experience and practical knowledge, gained from working with hundreds of families going through the same issues that you may face today.
Along our journey, we have been diligent to collect useful information and insights into all aspects of aged care placement. If you're totally at a loss as to where or how to begin your search, contact us and we can share this useful advice with you. Our staff have compassion and empathy for your family situation during this emotional time. Knowing that your loved one resides in a caring, calm and tranquil environment will give you peace of mind.
Navigating the Aged Care Maze
Many of us will face the daunting task of arranging care for a relative or friend in their later years, but the thought of placing our loved one into residential care can fill us with dread and guilt. It is easy to delay the inevitable which only magnifies and prolongs the stress.
Fortunately there is a service that can your assist you through this emotionally difficult time – to give you the peace of mind that the most appropriate option was chosen in a timely manner.
Aged Care Connect was established in 2002 to guide families through this stressful time and to navigate through the maze of local aged care options.
The concerns about moving to an aged care home?
- Elderly people can be very concerned and fearful of any change to their current situation, especially involving their health, well-being and lifestyle options
- Most prefer to stay in the comfort of their family home for as long as possible
- They worry about a loss of independence, being regimented, entering an unfamiliar environment, experiencing different activities and meeting new and unfamiliar people
- They worry about being taken care of properly and treated in a dignified and respectful manner
- They are concerned about the cost of care and accommodation fees and if they will be forced to sell their cherished family home to pay for the fees
- Elderly persons often have pre-conceived ideas about aged care - based upon past models and approaches to care delivery
Signs that you need to start thinking about aged care
- Mild personality changes (lack of confidence, forgetful or vague, repetitive conversations)
- Poor nutrition, out-of-date food in the fridge, loss of appetite, changes in weight
- Problems with bill paying and house maintenance
- Not attending to activities of daily living (cooking, cleaning, personal hygiene)
- Medication mis-management (not taking or taking too many medications)
Signs that action needs to happen immediately
- Diagnosis of serious and advanced health conditions
- Advanced dementia – including aggressive behaviour or wandering
- In general, being under any form of risk to health and well-being
What should we look for when choosing the most suitable aged care home?
- Quality and experienced care staff is paramount
- The Director of Care should be firm and have laid the ground rules for a professional and caring aged care home
- Appropriate ratio of staff members to resident - daytime, evening and weekends
- Quality and range of food is an important consideration to many residents
- Lifestyle activities should be frequent and diversified and individually tailored to each resident
- Large private rooms with ensuites, bright community areas
- Well maintained garden settings with opportunity to walk in a safe and secure manner
- Affordable fees and charges
- The approach taken by the aged care providers should be directed towards quality care programs (Not-for-profit versus Profit-based provider)
- Need More Information? Read our Placement Checklist
How can we know if one aged care home has a better reputation than another?
- Talk to an experienced specialist to get the up-to-date and accurate information
- There are consumer driven review websites that consumers can access
How can we discuss the next step with Mum?
- Pick a quiet moment, with no distractions, to have early discussions about how they are coping and the need to plan for the future
- Always be patient and respectful, but mindful that they need to find extra care
- Always have the discussion face-to-face, never by telephone or email – the tone and intent can be misinterpreted if not face-to-face
- Listen to their viewpoint and perspective and re-inforce that you have understood their thoughts, wishes and concerns
- Explain that it is not easy for yourself as well – and your objective is simply to make them as safe and risk-free as possible
- Involve them in the process, research, facility visits and decision making as much as practicable.
- Start the discussions early in the process to avoid the “limited time” approach.
- In some circumstances, if an elderly person is under significant risk or needs urgent help and they are resistant, consider seeking the support of their Pyschogeriatrician, GP, social worker, case manager or experienced placement consultant.
We feel guilty about Mum moving into aged care. How can we deal with this emotion?
- Do not be hard on yourself – be aware that the task you are facing - discussing aged care and placing a loved one into care - can be very distressing to the supportive family member – very few people find it easy.
- Share the load – have other supportive family members by your side
- Start the process early – avoid the “limited time to get it right” syndrome
The aged care system is confusing and changing. Who can help us understand the complexities?
- The Commonwealth is continuing to implement major changes to aged care in Australia – it pays to stay updated with those changes
- The My Aged Care website ( www.myagedcare.gov.au ) is the central gateway to access general informationand about the aged care system
Who would help Mum move into an aged care home?
- A placement agency like Aged Care Connect has the local knowledge, experience and industry contacts to make the task easier
What period of time does someone stay in an aged care home?
- Across all Australia, there are 263,788 residents in 2800 Commonwealth regulated aged care homes
- Nearly 7 out of 10 (69%) of residents are women
- Average age of female residents is 86 – average aged of male residents is 81.
- The average length of stay in a Commonwealth regulated aged care home is a little under 2 years (~700 days)
The most important messages ....
- Get the research and planning done as early as possible – to avoid being rushed into an uninformed decision, or having to take an option because it is the only one available at the time
- Share the activities and emotional load with supportive family members and experienced service providers
Need Further Information?
If you would like to discuss your family requirements and the local aged care options: