2021 was a year of challenge and change for the care sector

What a year it has been. In 2021 we had to embrace uncertainty, accept things don’t always go to plan and learn to be agile so we could meet the challenges we faced both at work and in our home life.

Change has been our one constant. And change has meant people and organisations have had to display agility, resilience and leadership in order to survive and thrive.

Like the rest of the world, Australia has experienced change as we have learnt to adapt practices to manage our exposure and response to the COVID 19 pandemic. Some care providers had the added challenge of having to deal first hand with COVID outbreaks.

It was a time when the importance of community connection and social connections with friends and families was high-lit. Feelings of disconnectedness were significant issues before the pandemic but amplified during this time. Our Checked In Care technology provided a way to deliver new connections between relatives and providers, bridge communication gaps and enhance the quality of conversations.

Providers using our Checked In Care app were able to establish important contact between people receiving care, their loved ones and provider staff. Enabling deeper and more meaningful relationships between staff and care recipients, while creating improved communication with loved ones and critical feedback and monitoring. Also our technology enabled better person centred care, better supported care plan updates and regular check-ins to ensure plan currency, relevance and effectiveness in being able to support people to live their best lives wherever they chose to live. Proving digital technology does play an important role in delivering an improved care experience.

During the year we saw the announcement by the Government that “Australia’s aged care sector will experience once in a generation reform.” This is not unexpected. We have all lived through The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety and experienced how this has fed into an increased voice within the community calling for a reframing of the concept of aged care living with a focus on the safety and well-being of consumers through a process of consumer choice and consultation.

At the same time the disability care sector is also facing change with the The Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse and Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability ongoing during the period. The focus so far has been on how to support a quality and skilled workforce to deliver safe, informed and skilled services, addressing discrimination experienced by people from CALD backgrounds and providing adequate oversight to ensure the safety of service delivery to people with a disability. There is more work to do before we see the recommendations next year.

Looking forward to 2022 the one certainty is that the frantic nature of change in the care sector is unlikely to ease. We anticipate more regulatory change and further impact from consumer expectations.

Our great opportunity is to focus on the things that we can control and to prioritise those activities that make a positive difference for those who are the most vulnerable to support them to live their best lives with choice and dignity. This call for an increased commitment for sustainable change to support the safety and well-being of consumers with a greater focus on consumer choice and consultation is what Checked In Care does well. We look forward to supporting care providers as you navigate the sea of change and increasingly turn to digital solutions as a means of transforming your care organisations to provide an improved care experience for all your customers – your consumers, residents, clients, participants and their friends and family.

To get in touch contact me at john.perkins@checkedincare.com.au