‘New thinking’ is emerging at the Royal Commission into Aged Care, and retirement villages are looking good!
The Commissioners have developed a model and specifications for housing and support for ageing Australians in the last 10 to 15 years of life.
Senior Counsel Assisting Peter Gray QC (pictured above) stated in Adelaide this week that there are eight key ideas proposed by the Commissioners on how the aged care system should be fundamentally changed.
The whole push is to get in early and support people years before they get truly old and frail.
Make their homes better to live in so they don’t have falls etc. Guide them to look after themselves better, and earlier, by having companionship, getting out more, getting ahead of illness.
The Commissioners want a supportive pathway for older Australians to age. They wish to separate accommodation and care as costs to the government and that care will start very early concentrating on wellness and reablement, for which the government will contribute funds.
Here is part of the list; I suggest you think how ‘retirement villages’ can deliver these services:
- create a care stream for services delivered either in the home or in more flexible and less institutional forms of residential care
- move to individualised funding for care matched to need within the care stream, irrespective of setting
- streamline access to low intensity and cost-effective support services to support a large number of older people to retain their independence
- (the government to) fund interventions to help restore functioning, provide respite and delay or prevent progression to more intensive forms of care
- support older people and their families to understand the (aged care) system and get the services and care they need
Retirement villages provide separate accommodation. Village management can provide a ‘care concierge’. Villages can provide basic but good wellness centres – gyms etc.
Individualised funding is ideal for the retirement village sector.
Separate funding for accommodation and care is ideal for the retirement village sector.
An early ‘system navigator’ is ideal for the retirement village sector.
The role of the Village Manager will be vital in this vision, a genuine ‘value’ enhancement that will elevate it as a profession.