Connecting health and social services begins in the home

A shift across all parts of the health and social services system is needed so services begin with the patient or client in their home rather than with the institution, KinCare CEO Jason Howie will tell the Health-e-Nation Leadership Summit.

 

Jason Howie Kincare 2014
Jason Howie, CEO of KinCare

A shift across all parts of the health and social services system is needed so services begin with the patient or client in their home rather than with the institution, a health forum in Sydney will hear today.

Community aged service provider KinCare CEO Jason Howie will tell the Health-e-Nation Leadership Summit about the need to connect health, ageing and disability care with the client at the forefront.

The summit brings together leaders from health and aged care, government and IT to discuss the future of health.

“The premise I often put to people is if you are going to be designing these systems from the ground up today you would start with the client in their home rather than with the institution or the service provider,” Mr Howie told Australian Ageing Agenda.

“The challenge that we have is getting from where we are at the moment to that type of a mindset.”

He said KinCare’s experience of working with people in their homes allowed them to see all of a client’s needs. They have found that someone with a health need is almost certainly going to have a social service’s need, such as assistance with daily living tasks or transport, Mr Howie said.

“As a community the way we have set up those systems is quite siloed. From a government funding perspective we just see the social need, or we just see the health need, or we just see the disability service that is required for somebody to integrate into the community.”

Putting ageing and disability services under the same portfolio is a step in the right direction but the health system still sits separately, he said.

“I haven’t been to a health conference or health forum yet where the issue of sharing data hasn’t come up because it is almost impossible to get a complete picture of a client in any one part of the system.”

Mr Howie said they had a number of case studies demonstrating the importance of an in-home assessment for someone with a health services need. “Just opening the pantry doors or noticing for instance there might be a bowl of food on the kitchen bench that is three weeks old and has gone mouldy. Those are the sorts of clues that you see when you are in the client’s living environment that say this client might have a further need that isn’t being addressed,” he said.

The Health-e-Nation Leadership Summit 2014 takes place on Wednesday 26 March at the Shangri-La Hotel in Sydney.

Tags: health-e-nation, jason-howie, kincare,

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