Peninsula Village resident Anthonius (Jack) Dieryx with team member Leisa Waters

The implementation of a consumer directed care model in an aged care home has improved trust, respect and communication between staff and residents, a provider CEO tells Australian Ageing Agenda.

The CDC model implemented by New South Wales aged care provider Peninsula Villages provides residents full autonomy in decision-making related to their lifestyle and care services.

It aims to improve residents’ understanding of their health and lifestyle issues to ensure they play an active role in maintaining their needs and wants, said Peninsula Villages CEO Shane Neaves.

“When you talk to the residents and talk to the residents’ families, they seem a lot more involved in their care plans and actually understand what’s going on,” Mr Neaves tells AAA.

“I’m not saying they didn’t understand before, but they have become a lot more involved and understanding of what we can and can’t do for them,” he said.

“They feel there is a lot more trust and respect.”

He said Peninsula Villages implemented a CDC model in response to the introduction of the new Aged Care Quality Standards, which took effect on 1 July last year.

The organisation previously had a person-centred approach, but it was based on routine and schedules.

Shane Neaves

Mr Neaves said meals is an area residents are exercising their preferences under the CDC model.

“Some of our gentlemen prefer to have their main meal as an evening meal rather than lunch, so it’s changing schedules.

“People might think they’re little things but when you’re producing 300-odd meals a day in the kitchen, it does bring up some challenges.

“But if it makes the resident happier and respects their choice, then I think it’s a lot easier for us to be able to have that situation with our residents,” he said.

He said the pre-admission process also incorporates the CDC approach to ensure the organisation understands potential residents’ needs and interests.

“By the time they’ve made a decision to come, we understand what they’re after and what the family is after and whether or not we can meet those expectations,” he said.

He said a challenge they faced was getting residents, families and staff to understand that rolling out the model would not be challenging.

“The challenges mainly were just preconceived ideas of residents and families and staff that this was going to be very cumbersome and very difficult to do and it isn’t, because it’s really about creating a partnership between the residents and the staff.”

Peninsula Villages undertook a trial of the model 12 months ago and is now rolling it out across all its villages.

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