Sarah Russell
Sarah Russell Jul 22, 2019

Do We Need Mandated Staffing Ratios or Staff Transparency in Aged Care?

The title of this year’s Victorian Healthcare Week Great Debate was: Do We Need Mandated Staffing Ratios in Aged Care? Are we better off focusing on the quality outcomes for older Australians rather than mandated staffing ratios? Lisa Giacomelli (Chief Operating Officer YMCA NSW) and I (Director, Aged Care Matters) received an invitation to speak on the opposing team. We were told we had been specially selected based not only on our expertise but also our ability to marry humour with...
Sarah Russell

Sarah Russell

Aged Care Matters

Dr Sarah Russell is a public health researcher who became interested in aged care when her parents moved to an aged care home. After her father died, she stopped full-time work so she could spend as much time with her Mum as possible. She wanted her Mum’s quality of life to be as good as it could be. She wanted her Mum to feel valued and be engaged in her ‘twilight years’. The time Sarah spent with her Mum in the aged care home was precious for them both. Although Sarah enjoyed the 4 years she spent with residents and staff, she watched the comings and goings in the aged care home with a critical eye.

Sarah Russell
Sarah Russell Jul 10, 2019

Improving transparency in the aged care sector will benefit everyone

  Last week, HelloCare invited me to comment on the requirement in the new Aged Care Quality Standards for open disclosure. I suggested all aged care homes and home care providers should be required to report adverse incidents not only to the older person and their family but also on their websites. I am pleased both Ian Yates (CEO, COTA) and Darren Mathewson (Acting CEO of ACSA) have contested this idea for improving transparency. I always welcome debate. A public debate about...
Image: Borya, Flickr.
Sarah Russell
Sarah Russell Jun 14, 2019

Older people at risk of being financially abused – by their children

The United Nations (UN) has designated today (15 June) as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. The types of abuse to be aware of include financial, physical, sexual, social, psychological and emotional abuse. Financial abuse appears to be the most common. While some older people are enjoying their wealth – travelling the world, their luggage broadcasting that they are spending their children’s inheritance  – others live in aged care homes, with their children keeping their eyes peeled on the ‘Bank of Mum and...
Sarah Russell
Sarah Russell May 20, 2019

Slinging mud during election campaign did not help resolve aged care crisis

A confidential internal inquiry into the office of the Aged Care Minister Ken Wyatt was leaked to the media during the recent election campaign. The journalist described the leaker as a “whistle blower.” Whistle blowers are honourable people who are motivated by altruistic intentions. Anonymous disgruntled staff members who are dissatisfied with the outcome of an internal grievance process are not whistle blowers. I have never worked in Minister Wyatt’s office so I do not have inside knowledge. However...
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