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Help with aged care homes
What are the accreditation standards?Aged care homes must be accredited under the Accreditation Standards for Residential Aged Care in order to receive public subsidies. The standards cover such things as: management, care, lifestyle, quality and safety issues. There are four standards, and 44 outcomes under these standards which must be met.
The Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency (more information) is responsible for accrediting homes and monitoring them against the standards. Homes are visited by accreditation assessors who not only talk to staff, but also to residents and their families about the home and how it meets the required standards.
Standard 1 relates to the achievement of all the standards. Among other things this standard ensures:
- homes have management and information systems that are responsive to the needs of residents, representatives, staff and stakeholders and the changing environment that the home operates within
- that you have access to a complaints system
- that the staff who care for you are skilled, and
- that the home has the appropriate goods and equipment.
- medication is managed safely and correctly
- clinical care meets your needs
- continence is managed effectively
- you are offered a varied, healthy and well-balanced diet
- oral and dental health is maintained, and
- your best level of mobility is achieved.
- maintaining your independence
- respecting your privacy, dignity and confidentiality
- encouraging your participation in decisions about services the home provides
- fostering your cultural and spiritual life, and
- ensuring residents understand their rights and responsibilities.
- minimising fire, security and emergency risks
- having an effective infection control program, and
- providing catering, cleaning and laundry services to enhance your quality of life.
What should you know about a home’s accreditation?Before entering an aged care home you might like to ask the following questions:
- How did the home go in its accreditation audit (more information)?
- How does the home involve residents in making improvements?
- If you have concerns, who should you talk to, and how would they handle this?
- How does the home keep residents informed?
- What happens when a home complies with the accreditation standards?
What happens when a home does not comply with the accreditation standards?In very serious cases the home’s accreditation may be revoked or have its period of accreditation reduced.
Read more: About what happens if accreditation standards aren’t met?
To read a home’s report or know more about the standardsThe Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency publishes the most current publicly available report for each aged care home. These reports reflect findings at the time of the audit only, and are not the sole source of information about a home.
You will also be able to access the latest accreditation report through the Aged Care Home Finder on this website.
Next step: Aged Care Home Finder
Aged care homes can nominate for the Better Practice in Aged Care Awards. The awards are presented for better practice in any program run by a home that benefits the lives of residents.
Home must be fully-compliant with the Accreditation Standards for at least the last two years to be eligible to apply for an award.
The Better Practice Awards program supersedes the Higher Ratings Awards scheme that was in place from 2002 to October 2005.
Have a look at the Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency website to find out which homes in your area have been given Better Practice Awards.
Common questions on this topic:
- How do I know if the aged care home provides quality care?
- My father is sharing a room with three other men. It is like a hospital ward. Aren't aged care homes supposed to be different?