Carers know all the details about the health of the person for whom they are caring. They are the first to notice a new bruise or skin change, a mood change or the impact that family or friends have on a person’s demeanor. Carers assess, report and confront changes and deterioration in a person’s health and wellbeing as part of their routine daily job role.
But what happens when there are changes to the carers health and wellbeing. Who cares for the carer?
Carer burnout is a real thing. It happens to professional and volunteer carers. It is a state of physical and emotional exhaustion and overwhelm. It can lead to feelings of being unvalued and endlessly tired. The carers work will suffer and the workplace will suffer.
It is essential that workplaces and workers manage carer burnout. For this reason many workplaces offer EMPLOYEE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM’s where the workforce is able to tap into free, professional counselling and support. It is necessary and needed.
In a recent study published in March 2017 found that 87% of the residential aged care workforce where women with an average age of 46yrs. If you work in a Residential Aged Care Facility you are more likely to have undertaken training than if you provided community based care, with a lack of assess to training for rural and regional Australia. The study also found a high job satisfaction but there was the perception of poor pay and status.
Read the report here:
Globally Australia is doing well but we could be doing better. The Care System is hard to navigate. The care job is complicated by shift work, managing behaviours, negative media, poor status of workers, complex care needs and carer burnout.
Mark Britnell, Chairman of KPMG Global Health Practice feels that Australia rates high in care delivery compared to her rest of the world but describes our healthcare system as “fragmented”. This fragmentation of the healthcare systems possesses challenges organisations to adopt a whole person approach to care. Australian healthcare funding contributes to the disjointed care model where Federal Government is responsible for aged and primary health, and State Governments are responsible for acute, hospital care. – CRAZY STUFF!
Read the article in full here:
I believe that we need an integrated care system, just as we need an integrated educational system. As a nation, our systems need to work together. Our systems need to focus on the people that they are designed to help, in a holistic and empowering way. Our systems need to be founded on research in examining what we do and how we can do it better. Our systems need to be built from an educational perspective that has a continuous improvement agenda.
Educational systems, practices and philosophies need to support the business of care, the workers in care and the people requiring care. Essentially a holistic approach to care requires access to education to build the care community. Funding needs to align with needs and continuous improvement. The Federal Government funding of care facilities impacts the State Government funding of acute care facilities. Helping one system improve will impact the other system in terms of admissions and needs.
Education is the premise for change. In building a care community, supported by education within care facilities, businesses, workers and users of the service will benefit. Education supports change. Education supports carers. Education should support the educators within the care community. Carers impact people. This must become a FEDERAL agenda.