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Thursday, February 25, 2021

How aged care is changing in 2021

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With aged care investment on the rise, more senior-focused technology available than ever and the Australian Government’s commitment of $1.6 billion in aged-care funding, the industry is looking to begin the early stages of a major overhaul in 2021. 

As Australia and the rest of the world take that important leap in recognising the importance of senior care, the process of moving senior citizens from their homes to aged care facilities is looking to be more streamlined. On top of this, care in the personal home of aged care residents is tipped to become more effective and efficient too. 

While we make our way into 2021, the aged care sector is also looking to benefit from cloud-based technologies which are designed with efficiency at the forefront, making applications and request processes a lot smoother. 

All that said, let’s take a look below at how aged care is changing in 2021 and what to expect in the years to come. 

Cloud-based Technology 

In decades past, some aged care service providers relied on slow and outdated IT systems to deal with a number of vital tasks for their residents and prospective residents, which resulted in long wait times and sometimes incorrect information being shared. 

As we begin to step into a more digitised and streamlined cloud-based system for the aged care sector, experts are touting that there will be consistent access to updated information on residents, applications and more — making for a far quicker and more streamlined process for aged care providers like Kew Gardens

On top of this, efficiency also works to reduce the time spent on specific administration tasks, reducing waste and saving money. That in mind, all of these slow administration tasks are set to be replaced by faster and more affordable ones, meaning facilities can reduce their overheads and share these savings with customers. 

One final thing to note is the use of self-service technologies coming into the aged care market. Residents are able to use these services to request care and make choices based on the options provided with these digital tools, further improving efficiency and the quality of care being received. 

The Aged Care Royal Commission

Setting aside the commission into human rights issues in the aged care sector, the process also highlighted incredible avenues for the delivering of better service to those in aged care. 

Through the use of B2G or Business to Government approaches and technologies, providers are better able to nab timely informative updates on resident information and gain insight into requirements that allow age care facilities to better offer services that are affordable, sustainable and life enriching. 

On top of this, the National Disability Insurance Agency is also expected to be given some of this information in order to streamline aged care resident’s access to things such as benefit packages and more — reducing wait times for important products and required services. 

Changing Care Models to Focus on Caregivers and Residents

Another key change coming to the aged care industry in 2021 is the renewed focus on dual-benefit care solutions. 

A number of aged care facilities of past years focused on somewhat outdated models of care, which often featured little to no room for change or innovation. That in mind, carers and residents were not typically seen as equal and there was a rather strenuous work output expected of caregivers which ultimately resulted in a rather poor work life for these staff. 

Fast forward to 2021 and aged care facilities on the forefront of this change are working to improve the lives of residents along with their staff through the use of more effective workflows and innovative caregiving procedures. 

This ultimately means that there’s a triple-positive coming from this — improved quality of care, better caregiving procedures and reduced cost of service. 

All of these things considered, we’re all looking to see better care provided in aged care facilities in 2021 and beyond. 

Smart Care and Technology

With COVID-19 drastically changing the freedoms of aged care residents and their ability to see family, the industry quickly dove into the technology market to soften some of these blows. 

With that in mind, we’re expected to see 2021 significantly build on this by integrating more and more social-focused smart technology in the aged care sector

From devices such as VR headsets, smart devices and video-calling devices coming into play in aged care facilities across the country, we’re looking to a more socially-focused well-being aspect in these assisted living homes. 

Adding to this, Australian Ageing has outlined that surveillance and security-focused technologies are looking to make their way further into the aged care industry, keeping residents safer and providers aware of issues and emergencies in real-time.  

Conclusion 

Keeping the above in mind, we’re looking to see some rather drastic changes in aged care through 2021 and that’s thanks to the government’s support along with the changes coming from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Aged care facilities have been given the avenue to innovate and have renewed access to funding and technology to offer residents and their caregivers a far better experience than in years past, a win for essentially everyone involved in aged care. 

Feature image: Photo by Georg Arthur Pflueger on Unsplash


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Find your light and shine

Jilliean Sioson is a film and TV student from Swinburne University in Melbourne, Australia. She is currently writing and producing...

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