Caring for the elderly is a huge responsibility, and as many aged care workers will tell you – a great honour.

It’s about giving back to people who have given so much to our society.

Aged care residents have worked hard to raise their families or build careers – they have each in their own way shaped Australia to what it is today.

As people age, they may start to require support that extends beyond what families can assist with on a long term basis.

This is where aged care facilities can provide real benefit to their communities.

Facilities face the challenge of supporting people in a safe and comfortable environment, while providing quality care for residents.

Setting the standard of care is essential to the success of facilities, however the delivery of these standards can often be difficult to ensure.

One of the most significant challenges aged care operators face is ensuring that the quality of care is consistently up to the standard that they set out to achieve.

The delivery of this service is in the hands of the staff, so having a quality team which includes experienced, competent and well-trained employees ensures better care outcomes for the elderly.

Feedback from aged care operators, along with the residents and their families, often report that the skills of newly qualified PCAs (and other staff) are below the expectations of delivering quality care.

They have the knowledge required; including showering and bathing residents, helping with mobility, moving them to prevent pressure sores and infection control. However they may lack the experience in applying these practical skills.

A key improvement needed in the quality of care is better training, mentoring and transition into the workplace. Traineeships provide the solution.

Traineeships vs Work Experience: What’s better?

Essentially there are two different ways of becoming a qualified aged care worker.

The more traditional route is applying directly with a registered training organisation (RTO) and completing a Certificate III in Aged Care.

Afterwards, a student would most likely have to do volunteer work in order to gain “work place experience” – generally this ends up being a little more than two weeks of full time work.

This normally happens at the end of a course, and it doesn’t guarantee the student a job where they are volunteering.

The other options is traineeships – which is what MAS National offers.

MAS National students work with an employer from the start, where once a week the student devotes a couple of hours to do their study while they work.

This allows the student to learn new skills and gain knowledge as they complete their study,  which they are then able to practice in following shifts with an employer.

This ends up being more than six and half times more work experience and more application of the skills that the student is learning throughout their studies.

And the benefit for the student is that they are being paid and employed for that time.

The key difference, and benefit, is that students are working with an employer while they are doing their studies and getting their qualification over a period of time.

MAS National advocates on the behalf of the student and the aged care provider to make sure quality care is delivered and future aged care workers enter the workforce with the right skills and practice.

MAS National works with each business to find out what kind of traineeship program would suit their business the best, and what their needs are in terms of staff and skills.

Different RTOs offer different solutions in terms of training structures for students. MAS National works with the aged care provider to find the right training organisation that is most appropriate and that meets their needs.

What’s the Cost?

MAS National are contracted by the Federal Department of Education and Training to deliver Australian Apprenticeship Support Services at no cost to businesses.

From an employer’s perspective, if a student is learning alongside working with an employer, they are implementing a skill and productive in their business.

Not only does this drive the quality, it influences the culture of the organisation and makes sure that the service is at the forefront of the industry.

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