What Does Quality of Care Mean to You?

Message from Tamar Krebs

The Responsible Care Initiative, is an initiative of Aged Care Report Card, which is helping providers really understand what nursing home residents believe is the most important things in their eyes that reflect quality care. We believe that in order to deliver effective person-centred care, you need to understand the experiences of people living in a nursing home.

The Responsible Care Initiative is about opening up communication channels to contribute to a deeper understanding of “Quality of Care” in nursing homes, which means the most important people in the home to in fact evaluate quality are those receiving the direct care. That’s the residents and their representatives.

We found that the most important factors of “Quality of Care” in the eyes of the consumer are;

  • Living conditions
  • Quality of the nursing staff,
  • Quality of direct nursing care, and
  • Quality of the social environment.

We believe that by improving the “Quality of Care” offered, this can improve the “Quality of Life” of those in aged care.

“Quality of Life” generally refers to an person’s experience of well-being and overall enjoyment of their lifestyle. The Institute of Medicine gives the definition of “Quality of Care” that captures the features of many other definitions and has received wide acceptance. It defines quality as; ‘The degree to which health services for individuals and populations increase the likelihood of desired health outcomes and are consistent with current professional knowledge’. Although there is no universally accepted definition, it is widely accepted in the healthcare sector that quality care should be: safe; effective, person centred, timely, efficient and equitable.

A number of studies have looked into the concept “Quality of Life” from the perspective of residents in aged care. They found the most important issues in terms of quality of life are choice, participation in meaningful activities, socialising with others, feeling safe and secure and relationships with staff. Other studies have reported residents are looking for a caring attitude, respect for individual differences and emotional support.

Enhancing quality in aged care really starts by delivering what older people want rather than what we think they want.

Let’s work as a community together and get #responsible.  Ask your provider have they made a responsible pledge today?

Founder’s Message – Responsible Care

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