News digest

Life looking up for seniors, DSS seeking aged care experts; principles of good charity regulation; medication management alerts for pharmacy customers; subsidised exercise classes for NSW seniors.


In this issue:

  • Life looking up for seniors
  • DSS seeking aged care experts
  • Principles of good charity regulation
  • Medication management alerts for pharmacy customers
  • Subsidised exercise classes for NSW seniors

Life looking up for seniors

2nd Seniors Sentiment IndexSeniors are more positive about their finances, health and social wellbeing than they were a year ago but this has only slightly affected their overall satisfaction with life, according to a new report from National Seniors.

The 2nd Seniors Sentiment Index, which was commissioned by investment management firm Challenger, surveyed 2,000 Australians aged 50 and over about their views on different aspects of their life and Australian society in general.

The overall index increased from 66 per cent in 2012 to 72 per cent in 2013 with the largest increase in the social index, which went from 68 per cent to 77 per cent over the same period.

The financial index rose from 58 per cent to 63 per cent, the health index increased from 71 per cent to 74 per cent and the overall life satisfaction index moved slightly from 77 per cent to 79 per cent.

According to the report, the social domain had the strongest relationship with overall life satisfaction, confidence in retirement income had the strongest relationship with financial wellbeing, and community satisfaction had the strongest relationship with social wellbeing.

In health, satisfaction with government health spending rose from 17 per cent to 24 per cent and the report found slight improvements with seniors being able to get an appointment with health professionals when necessary.

DSS seeking aged care experts

The Department of Social Services is looking for aged care expert individuals or organisations to fill positions on the department’s Administrator and Adviser panels.

Panel members assist aged care providers solve non-compliance issues through improvements in areas such as the provision of care and services, governance and business operations.

The DSS is seeking for applicants with more than five years experience at the senior administration or clinical management level, sound knowledge in leading and managing change, influencing and motivating others, and high level communication and negotiation skills.

National and state/territory positions are available. Applications close on 4 March 2014. More information here: Adviser and Administrator Panels

Principles for good charity regulation

The Australian Charities and Not-for-profit Commission (ACNC) Advisory Board has recommended eight principles for good charity regulation and administration in a new online paper.

The paper outlines the principles and is intended to inform and stimulate discussions on what makes for good governance and good regulation within the charities and not-for-profits sector.

The board’s recommended principles are:

  • independence of decision-making (free of sector, political or commercial influence)
  • effectiveness and efficiency in achieving clearly defined policy goals
  • clarity, transparency and accountability
  • fairness and natural justice in decision making and administrative processes
  • integrity and certainty
  • proportionality, consistency and regulatory necessity
  • understanding of, and respect for, the contribution of the sector
  • integration, consistency and support of other laws, agreements and international obligations.

The paper contains an expanded explanation and is available here: Principles of good charity regulation

Medication management alerts for pharmacy customers

TabletsmedicinelowresCommunity pharmacy outlet Discount Drug Stores has launched a free medication management program to assist all Australians with taking the full course of their medication correctly.

Customers, or their nominated carers, can sign up to receive prescription reminders via SMS, voicemail or email.

The program aims to reduce medication related illnesses caused from medication mismanagement by providing additional information resources and consultation time with pharmacists.

Professional services manager at Discount Drug Stores, Casey Clark said medication-related illnesses caused approximately 140,000 hospital admissions per year.

The biggest cause is medication mismanagement such as forgetting to take it, having difficulty understanding how to take, not taking it because of fears about the side effects, or self-medicating instead of following the doctor or pharmacist’s advice, she said.

Subsidised exercise classes for NSW seniors

The NSW Government has partnered with the Aquatic and Recreation Institute (ARI) to deliver a pilot program aimed at helping seniors stay healthy through subsidised exercise classes.

The ARI Active Ageing program is designed to encourage people aged 50 and over to get healthy and active through subsidised aqua fitness and gentle exercises classes run by qualified professionals at 13 pilot sites across Sydney and regional NSW.

In addition to accessible, affordable and appealing classes for seniors, the initiative will provide a social and welcoming atmosphere while focusing on strength and balance to help prevent falls and improve cardiovascular health, the government said.

It is hoped investment in healthy activities now could lead to savings in health and aged care costs in the future, it said.

The pilot sites are in Leichhardt, Manly, Parramatta, Bankstown, Randwick, Sutherland, Fairfield, Tamworth, ShoalhavenWagga Wagga, Taree, Goulburn, and Narrabri.

Tags: acnc, active-ageing, medication-management, national-seniors,

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