In Western Australia, My Flex Health International is one of the largest owned and operated health service providers. It is a group of companies that deal with three areas of business. These are health services, home care, and training services (About My Flex Health International, n.d.) In this paper, home care services will be the main focus. My Flex Home Care provides home care services such as offering long and short-term care, domestic services, community nursing and personal care to private clients who have chosen to remain in their homes (About My Flex Health International, n.d.) In The main concept is providing these services while maintaining the clients independence and wellness. Some of the domestic services offered are cleaning, grocery shopping, and laundry. Sometimes the services can extend to home and garden maintenance. For short-term and long care services, Flex does accept hospital discharges for the elderly and disabled as fast as possible.
Australian and International Compliance Requirements for Aged Care Service Provider
Like in other businesses the aged care service providers have standards that have to be complied with to ensure that the service provided is of high quality. In Australia, the quality standards are reviewed by the Australian Aged Care Quality Agency (AACQA). It is a body that accredits residential care services as well as checking the quality of home care services. For aged care services to be accredited, they must meet the accreditation requirement under aged care act. An aged service provider that is not accredited cannot receive the subsidy for its care recipients. The accreditation standards are found in full detail in the Quality of care principles 2014.
According to the quality of care standards, there are four principle standards which must be met for the provision of residential care services. Following the four standards, there are forty-four expected outcomes. These standards are
The first standard, consists of developing the organization through building a management system and sourcing appropriate staff and consider the clients needs and other stakeholders (Quality of care principles 2014, 2014).
The other standard is matters to do with the health and personal care. In this, the clients wellness in terms of health should be promoted and maintained at an optimum level. (Quality of care principles 2014, 2014).
Clients care and lifestyle. the recipients are supposed to retain their rights. They are also assisted in controlling their lives actively.
The fourth standard is about physical environment and safe systems (Standards | Ageing and Aged Care, 2015). They should be provided with a conducive environment for a better quality. (Quality of care principles 2014, 2014).
Stages of Developing a Management System as per Standard AS3806:2006
AS3806:2006 is a standard which was developed by Standards Australia with the purpose of maintaining a management systems approach. The standards have got 12 principles approach which is under four categories as discussed below (Dee, 2006).
Principle 1: the governing body and its top management must be committed. For aged care services, the AACQA must be committed for effective compliance which permeates the service provider
Principle 2: The organizations strategy and business objectives for the aged service care should align with the compliance policy, and the AACQA should endorse them.
Principle 3: for an effective compliance program, the appropriate resources should be allocated. These are resources such as the governments financial support.
Principle 4: AACQA and its top management should endorse the strategy of the program for the aged care organization.
Principle 5: The AACQA should identify and assess the compliance obligations established by the aged care organization (Doe, 2006). If all the above principle guidelines are followed when establishing a compliant management system for an aged care service provider, then there is satisfactory commitment.
Principle 6: here, the responsibilities and expected outcomes of an aged care service provider are explained and assigned clearly. For instance, the four standards and their forty-four outcomes discussed earlier for residential care services must be understood.
Principle 7: to fulfill the compliance obligations for the aged care service, the competence and training needs of the employees must be identified and dealt with.
Principle 8: the aged care service organizations behavior that encourages compliance should be endorsed while discarding the behaviors that compromise compliance.
Principle 9: when the compliance obligations and desired behaviors are identified, control and management means should be put in place. All these principles should be implemented when establishing an effective compliance program. An Example of obligation is safe handling of cytotoxic drugs and related wastes, by the service provider or by the organization
Monitoring and measuring
Principle 10: the programs progress should be monitored by the relevant authorities. For residential aged care, the AACQA should have its representatives who should monitor and report activities in the organizations.
Principle 11: the residential aged care organizations should be able to demonstrate their compliance program. The demonstration should be through documentation and actual practice (Dee, 2006).
Principle 12: This is the last process of establishing a good compliance program where it is regularly checked to introduce improvements for better service provision. (Dee, 2006).
Documenting and Reporting on a Compliance Program
As an aged care worker or service provider, some activities should be documented and reported to the relevant authorities. These are activities such assault, missing resident without explanation, among other activities and the reporting and documentation should be done for the benefit of the resident or client, the worker, the organization and any other stakeholder. However, the documentation and reporting should be done by the policies and protocols establishes by the organization. For instance, if a worker is supposed to report to a supervisor, he or she should not report to anyone apart from the supervisor.
Before a worker can report something, it is essential first to document the incidences. The care services provided should also be documented for future reference. For instance, if an elderly develop some complications, the documents should be able to show if the quality of care provided was satisfactory, and an expert would be able to know if the complications were caused by the kind of service offered. When documenting, the documents should be legible with correct spelling and grammar, should be in English, the year date and time should also be indicated, the clients details such as name and date of birth should be indicated, sign all entries among others.
The reporting can be done through several ways. Some of these ways are telephone reporting, handover reports which are given to the incoming staff in case of change of shift, written reports presented to supervisors, verbal reports to the local police and Australian Department of Health in case of incidences such as missing resident among others. Written reports should be clear, concise, complete, factual, accurate, relevant, logical, useful and specific (Personal Care: Reporting and Documenting, n.d.).
To establish an effective compliance program here are some suggestions some practices that would be implemented. One of them is providing better health care. This may be achieved through including new educational resources and oral health assessment tools. Another suggestion that can be implemented is ensuring that new and existing staff is always competent. This can be done by providing a means of getting feedback from the clients. Encouraging a better practice of nutrition and hydration in residential aged care can also be implemented among others. Once something is implemented, it should regularly be reviewed to see if the expected outcomes have been achieved and probably make some few improvements.
Seeking Approval from Internal and External Personnel before Establishing a Compliance Program
After deciding to establish a compliance program for the aged care, one must seek approval from the relevant authorities. An individual or an organization is supposed to meet some prerequisites before applying for approval. Examples understand the requirements of the concerned acts. The application should be submitted on the approved form, all attachments requested in the application form must be provided, and the application should be completed by printing in black or written in black among others (Guidelines for Applicants Seeking Approval to Provide Aged Care, 2009). Another area of importance during the application process is the applicants details such as legal names, registered business applicant, applicants postal address, authorized contacts, organizations type and purpose, type of care, incorporation details and others (Application for Approval to Provide Aged Care, 1997). Their many other steps that are followed by a compliance program is approved, and it is the applicants responsibility to meet the requirements.
In this case study, it is clear that the residential aged care organizations are as important as any other service provider organization. There is the governing agency that ensures the quality standards are met for the efficient running of residential aged care. The compliance requirements have been expounded as well as the process of developing a compliance program. The documentation and reporting of activities by an aged care worker has also been briefly explained and some practices which can be implemented in such programs. Lastly, the process of seeking approval has been briefly discussed to help understand the essential requirements for approval.
Anon, 1997. Application for Approval to Provide Aged Care. [Online] Ablisui.business.gov.au. Available at: <https://ablisui.business.gov.au/AG/resource/AP6546.pdf.pdf> [Accessed 2 Dec. 2017].
Anon, 2009. Guidelines for Applicants Seeking Approval to Provide Aged Care. [Online] Agedcare.health.gov.au. Available at: <https://agedcare.health.gov.au/sites/g/files/net1426/f/documents/09_2014/attachment_h2_-_guidelines_for_applicants_-_20091012_2.pdf> [Accessed 2 Dec. 2017].
Anon, 2014. Quality of Care Principles 2014. [Online] Legislation.gov.au. Available at: <https://www.legislation.gov.au/Details/F2014L00830> [Accessed 2 Dec. 2017].
Anon, 2015. Standards | Ageing and Aged Care. [Online] Agedcare.health.gov.au. Available at: <https://agedcare.health.gov.au/ensuring-quality/standards> [Accessed 2 Dec. 2017].
Anon, n.d. About My Flex Health International. [Online] Myflexhealth.com.au. Available at: <http://www.myflexhealth.com.au/about-flex> [Accessed 2 Dec. 2017].
Anon, n.d. My Flex Health International Services. [Online] Myflexhealth.com.au. Available at: <http://www.myflexhealth.com.au/our-services> [Accessed 2 Dec. 2017].
Anon, n.d. Personal care: Reporting and documenting. [Online] Swsi.moodle.tafensw.edu.au. Available at: <https://swsi.moodle.tafensw.edu.au/mod/book/view.php?id=417008> [Accessed 2 Dec. 2017].
Dee, B., 2006. Australian Standard on Compliance Programs (AS 3806-2006): [online] Hcca-info.org. Available at: <https://www.hccainfo.org/Portals/0/PDFs/Resources/library/AustralianStandards.pdf> [Accessed 2 Dec. 2017].
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