A report from aged care provider Whiddon reinforces the positive impact relationship-based care can have on its residents and home care clients.

Released ahead of Aged Care Employee Day on 7 August – which recognises the individual efforts and contributions of the aged care workforce – the 2023 True Colours Report gathers feedback from residents, families, and community care clients to gauge satisfaction levels with Whiddon’s services and staff.

The survey shows 92 per cent of residents value their relationships with Whiddon staff while 98 per cent said employees are kind and caring and treat them with respect.

Also, 96 per cent agreed that Whiddon employees know them well and are responsive to their needs and 75 per cent said the same familiar employees care for them each day.

The annual report – which was launched in 2021 – also shows that families value Whiddon’s relationship-based approach, with 83 per cent reporting satisfaction with the care their loved one receives.

Chris Mamarelis

Whiddon chief executive officer Chris Mamarelis told Australian Ageing Agenda the findings show the benefits of personalised care.

“We know from our experience pioneering relationship-based care that to achieve richer and more meaningful outcomes we require dedicated rostering – that is, people caring for the same people – and employees need to be given licence to engage on a personal level with residents while working towards common goals and be committed to fostering a true partnership model.”

Mr Mamarelis added aged care is an “intimate journey” a carer and a resident take together. “The relationships that evolve between people working in aged care and the residents are created through the hundreds of personal interactions that occur daily and weekly to support their needs. Whether it is helping someone to finish their breakfast, assistance in showering and dressing or accompanying someone on an outing, it’s close, personal and involves an emotional investment – wanted or not.”

When surveying clients receiving home care, 97 per cent of respondents said they valued their relationships with their carers and 96 per cent said staff know them well and are responsive to their needs.

Furthermore, 93 per cent said the same familiar employees care for them each day while 83 per cent said the care workers were able to provide support if they felt sad or lonely.

“These close relationships can tap into the sometimes unmet needs of our residents by our staff simply spending more time with them,” Mr Mamarelis told AAA.

Family satisfaction was also high with 95 per cent of families agreed that Whiddon employees are improving the quality of life of their loved ones.

As well, 87 per cent believed the care workers know their loved one well and are responsive to their needs.

Aged Care Employee Day

Pioneered by Whiddon, but now championed by the Aged & Community Care Providers Association, Aged Care Employee Day represents more than 427,000 people working in residential, home and retirement living services who care for 1.5 million older Australians each day.

AAA will have wider coverage of the event next week. Send us an image of your ACED celebrations or a valued employee with a reason why they deserve a special mention to editorial@australianageingagenda.com.au

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