Staff engagement and satisfaction is key to quality aged care in the home. That is the key finding of a research project supported by Anglicare Australia Network and industry super fund HESTA.
As our population ages, it’s becoming more and more important that older people get the care and support they need at home. But very little research has been done on the experiences of frontline, home-based aged care workers.
The report, Quality Jobs and Best Practice Care: Improving Homecare Staff Engagement Within a Consumer Directed Care Environment, is based on interviews and focus groups with staff in AnglicareSA and Amana Living Perth. The aim of the research was to explore insights from frontline workers around challenges they faced in providing home care.
Staff reported that the best quality care is relational care. That means valuing and supporting workers, so they can support older people. It also means cutting through some of the red tape that surrounds them so they can spend more time caring for people.
Our research also found that Consumer Directed Care models sometimes throw up challenges. It can be hard to balance the demand for flexibility against the need to build consistent relationships between staff and clients. The staff surveyed in this report treasure these relationships, and they are very sensitive to the needs of their clients.
The report contains a wealth of insights on how to improve the quality of home care.