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Gorilla Jobs Blog New Aged Care Quality Indicators April 2023 Elderly Couple Happily Hugging Each Other From Behind

Aged Care News: New Quality Indicators from April 2023

November 30, 2022 0 Comments

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:

  • Pressure sores
  • Physical restraint
  • Weight loss
  • Falls and fractures
  • Medication management.

A swathe of data on these indicators was published for the period April to June 2022 and can 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.

South Australia’s Flinders University assisted with this, designing QCE-ACC (Quality of Care Experience Aged Care Consumers) and QOL-ACC (Quality of Life Aged Care Consumers) as person-centred tools for quality assessment and economic evaluation” for the aged care sector.

These new tools, created in line with recommendations made by the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, are detailed in the updated draft QI Program Manual and are to be introduced from 1 April 2023.

Gorilla Jobs Blog New Aged Care Quality Indicators April 2023 Girl Having Fun With Cookies and Elderly Woman At Kitchen Table
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels

The new aged care quality indicators are:

  • Activities of daily living: Percentage of care recipients who experienced a decline in activities of daily living
  • Incontinence care: Percentage of care recipients who experienced incontinence associated dermatitis
  • Hospitalisation: Percentage of care recipients who had one or more emergency department presentations
  • Workforce: Percentage of staff turnover
  • Consumer experience: Percentage of care recipients who report “good” or “excellent” experience of the service
  • Quality of life: Percentage of care recipients who report “good” or “excellent” quality of life.

A pilot program ran for six weeks in March-April 2022 to test the new aged care quality indicators, with participants in the pilot confirming that:

  • 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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