The Quality Agency's discussion paper
The Quality Agency has released a discussion paper

Aged care providers and staff, consumers, family members and academics are encouraged to have their say on what constitutes quality in aged care, with the Australian Aged Care Quality Agency seeking input to inform the review of the standards.

The Quality Agency has produced a discussion paper to stimulate discussion and debate about the best ways to describe, encourage and monitor quality in aged care services.

CEO Nick Ryan said that what “quality care” meant and how it was measured were more important questions to consumers than whether a provider was meeting the legislated standards.

“People are looking for quality,” Mr Ryan said.

The discussion paper canvassed quality from a number of perspectives including history, drivers for change and desired outcomes. The discussion was shaped around five themes:

  1. Putting consumers front and centre
  2. Safety is essential but not enough
  3. Integration across the aged care experience
  4. A quality culture that encourages excellence
  5. Leadership and innovation

Ultimately, the feedback would inform the review of the current standards, and help identify ways to better understand the consumer experience, as well as themes for further engagement and education, the agency said.

“We want this to be the beginning of an authentic engagement process that is ongoing and dynamic,” said Mr Ryan.

Read the discussion paper on the Quality Agency’s website and provide views through the feedback channel.

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  1. Congratulations on the Australian Quality Care Agency on starting the conversation on the elephant in the room…lack of focus on providing quality of care. The introduction of Consumer Directed Care in full from 1/7/2015 is a great start…as these financial reforms empower Elders to take up their 6 NEW RIGHTS and take greater control, greater say over their care. More informed, educated and empowered Consumers will drive / force faster take up of quality of care.

  2. Very well done to “the agency ” on addressing the important issue of quality from the perspective from the older person . Benetas look forward to working with you on this

  3. Well done…really?

    Applauding the agency for asking how it should be doing what it’s already supposed to be doing is a curious response.

    What people are really looking for, Mr Ryan, is the end to meaningless titles like ‘Quality’.

    Quality what?

    The agency’s eternal one-word mantra has driven our sector’s mindless preoccupation with ‘Quality’ (quality what?). The public aren’t that silly…they know that ‘quality’ isnt simply a list of audits, a scrappy ‘Improvement Plan’ (there’s another one!) and an army of clipboard clutchers.

    We should ditch the word ‘quailty’ unless it precedes a verb or a noun.

    We could, for example, start with quality care. (With no RNs on duty, the bar will be set nice and low).

    Its encouraging to see the agency acknowledge its been on wrong track, but what on earth do they expect will emerge from those discussion points? (” A qualty culture that encourages excellence” Huh?)
    May I suggest focusing on some real outcomes (falls, infections, unplanned hospitalisations, staff ratios, pressure injuries, etc) and complete transparency throughout ALL stages of the accreditation and monitoring process, instead of just the final result?

    Much ado about nothing

  4. Why not start a conversation on all your ‘protected information’? Until the agency stops hiding behind the Act all we’ll get are homogenised results and plenty of self-congratulations.

    Would anyone believe the HSC was legitimate if it had similar results to the AACQA audits (95% achieve 100%).? What are they hiding and why?

    Mr Ryan, if you cant be transparent, dismantle the existing model and start again. People aren’t ‘looking for quality’, they’re looking for the truth and a robust system that ensures the eldery are in safe hands. Everything else is just spin.

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