Elder abuse and issues relating to the care of LBGT people are covered for the first time in new clinical guidelines on the care of older people released by the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners.
The RACGP released its updated and expanded Aged care clinical guide (Silver Book) Part B this month.
RCAGP Harry Nespolon says there is huge opportunity for GPs to make a difference in the lives of older people and says the guidelines have been the go-to-guide for GPs caring for Australian seniors for the last two decades.
More than one inthree GP encounters involve people aged over 65, and this will only increase as the population ages, Dr Nespolon says.
“We need a clear strategy for the future of GP services so people can continue to access high-quality care,” he says.
Associate Professor Mortin Rawlin, chair of the Silver Book review panel, says the guidelines deal with many of the issues highlighted by the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.
“This is the first edition of the Silver Book to include practice points on issues like elder abuse and for marginalised groups, such as older LGBTI people and those living with disabilities – it’s a world class framework to guide GPs, so older people get the care and support that is right for them,” he said.
“We know what needs to change. The Royal Commission into Aged Care and Quality Safety highlighted the issues in aged care and unique concerns of marginalised group.
“There is a huge opportunity for GPs to make a difference – they have a central role to play in creating a more inclusive environment for all.”
For the first time, the guidelines include information on:
- supporting independent living in old age
- family and carers
- older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
- care of older LGBTI population
- multiculturalism in aged care
- disability in aged care
- older people in rural and remote communities
- abuse of older people