Aged Care

Project to streamline hospital to aged care transition


Community Industry Group (CI Group) is embarking on a new project funded by the NSW Government to streamline the transition of older individuals from hospitals to aged care facilities. With a $300,000 grant, CI Group aims to introduce innovative strategies to expedite this process.

The project will focus on establishing a volunteer coordinator program to aid in the transition of older patients into residential aged care facilities (RACFs). This initiative responds to the challenge of the limited availability of local RACF beds, particularly in the Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District. On any given day, around 90 patients in this district await placement in residential care.

Minister for Health Ryan Park has endorsed the project, emphasising its importance in reducing unnecessary hospital stays for older individuals awaiting RACF placement.

“We remain committed to implementing initiatives aimed at reducing any unnecessary lengths of stay in hospital being experienced by older people waiting for RACF placement in the Illawarra region,” Park said.

“Collaborative projects like these are important in addressing delays in discharging older people from hospital which can slow patient admission times.”

CI Group CEO Nicky Sloan highlighted the organisation’s ability to lead regional collaborative projects addressing critical issues. The funding will enable CI Group to work with various stakeholders, including aged care providers, health districts and government departments, to implement three key initiatives:

  1. Research: Research into the drivers of discharge delays of older people into residential aged care facilities, as well as a review of the ability of aged care services to meet the needs of these older patients. This research will be led by Professor Kathy Eagar and well-known aged care expert, Paul Sadler.
  2. Transition Volunteers: The creation of a team of discharge support volunteers, to be known as the Supported Transition Assistance Response Scheme (STARS), to assist the process of transfer for each person from hospital to an aged care home or their own home.
  3. Taskforce: Establishment of a multi-agency regional health and aged care taskforce to oversee these projects and develop a regional health and aged care plan to address the ageing demographic needs.
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Ritchelle is a Content Producer for Healthcare Channel, Australia’s premier resource of information for healthcare.

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