Substantial changes to aged care quality indicators are coming: Here’s what healthcare workers need to know.
The 2019 Federal budget brought in a measure titled More Choices for a Longer Life linking additional funding for Aged Care to “mandatory national quality indicators”.
This was to ensure that the growing number of Australians in aged care facilities or in receipt of aged care services received “high-quality clinical care by requiring regular public reporting by providers across the nation”.
The government did this to mandate the collection and publication of care quality indicators across five critical areas of care:
Falls and fractures
A swathe of data on these indicators was published for the period April to June 2022 andcan be viewed here.
New aged care quality indicators
In important news for healthcare workers working in the aged care sector, September 2022 saw the Department of Health and Aged Care release six additional aged care quality indicators.
Between November and December 2021, the Department took feedback on the initial aged care quality indicator program from stakeholders, which was combined with advice from technical experts to develop six new quality indicators to be tested in a pilot program.
They were easy to understand and feasible to implement
Aged care services can use routine care processes and records to help gather data
Different data gathered by those in the pilot suggested that the new aged care quality indicators would provide useful information about the quality of care and assist in continuous quality improvement and performance.
The success of the pilot and the bringing in of the new aged care quality indicators means that residential aged care providers must collect this new data for the April – June 2023 quarters for submission during the July 2023 reporting quarter.
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