04 August 2022

Taking care of our loved ones, every step of the way

We have every reason to celebrate the people who look after our loved ones in Aged Care.

Each year on 7th August we celebrate Aged Care Employee Day and all the special people who work in residential, home and community aged care.

Across Australia over 360,000 workers - nurses, care workers, allied health professionals, hospitality teams, drivers, cleaners, volunteers, lifestyle officers, administration staff support nearly 1.5 million older Australians.

APM Assessment Services delivers aged care assessments to older people across Australia, helping them to access the support they need to live more independently at home.

They also deliver Residential Aged Care Assessments which ensure older people gain access to the right support in aged care residences.
In the last year, our team completed over 69,200 assessments, comprised of more than: 

  • 39,300 Regional Assessment Service (RAS) assessments
  • 29,900 Residential Aged Care assessments (RACA)

From the very beginning, from the first phone call through to finalising living arrangements, our older Australians are cared for at every step of the way.

Shining a light on our aged care employees

To celebrate the work of our APM Assessment Services team, we’re shining a light on some of our superstars from across customer service, regional assessment, residential assessment, and clinical advisory services.

Meet Fiona (Home Support Assessor), Myita (Assessor), Ellie (Clinical Advisor), Lauren (Clinical Advisor), Meghan (Senior Customer Service Officer) and Erin (Assessor).

What’s special about working in Aged Care?

Fiona: I have always said I work in Aged Care because I am selfish and that I have received far more from clients than I have given. I began in the Aged Care Industry in 1999 and to be honest, my priority was finding a job that would allow me to be available to my children who were only young at the time.

I had no idea that working with my elders would lead to a career of lifelong learning, laughter, tears of joy and sorrow and a desire to always try to help provide care, in various forms, to people who so deserve our respect and best efforts.

Myita: Since I was young, I was brought up to respect, honour, and value the elderly. There’s so much wisdom to be gained from spending time with them. They are also part of a vulnerable population that needs advocating, and there’s a growing demand for more improvement in the aged care industry.

Ellie: I was incredibly fortunate to have my grandparents be a big part of my life growing up. My grandmother unfortunately had a stroke only weeks before I graduated from high school, at the time I did not know I would discover Occupational Therapy by sheer serendipity.

Watching day by day the difference in my grandmother’s rehabilitation from the input of such dedicated team is what made me want to be a part of the aged care industry. I found a sense of purpose in helping others and knowing even the smallest thing can make someone’s day so much better.

Lauren: After graduating and working in the hospital system as a Registered Nurse, I realised very quickly it was not for me. I started working in the community with the over 65’s and loved it. I was able to spend the time with my clients and listen to their stories, I felt a part of their family. Majority of the time I would be their only visitor for the day and seeing them so thankful for my visit makes me appreciate my work every day.

Meghan: My passion and core values rotate around the ability to help people- in particular, people who are highly vulnerable and supporting people with disabilities. Living with a disability myself, having family members who are vulnerable and struggle daily, and past grandparents that had gone through the Aged Care System, I understand the importance of feeling empowered as well as independent in everything that you do.

It gives me much pride being on a platform to spread awareness what this type of service can offer and giving people the opportunity to live out their lives as how they choose too without losing things and opportunities that mean most to them.

Erin: Starting and focusing my nursing career around aged care throughout different roles allowed me to hear many unwritten histories from people's experiences. This industry developed me professionally and personally, allowing me to fully embrace a role that attends to an individual holistically, involving their wishes, preferences and loved ones.

In saying so, my experiences have come with challenges, as I improve rapport with patients it can be challenging as we head towards the end of life. This made me want to focus on pallative care, ensuring that the resident and their loved ones are supported through this tough time.

Tell us how your work makes a difference to the lives of older Australians?

Fiona: As an assessor, I am in the privileged position of being welcomed into people’s lives – wonderful people who I would otherwise never meet. Of course, I aspire to improve those lives, but I remain mindful they are the experts.

I hope I help by listening respectfully and empathetically and without judgement, showing faith in their strengths and abilities, and working with them to discuss choices they can make to benefit themselves. I represent APM and a government and I hope that clients feel that they are a priority and that their wellbeing is important to all of us.

Myita: Residential Aged Care Assessments (RACA) is at the fore front of leading changes in aged care aimed at delivering person-centred care tailored to the needs of the individuals. I feel the allocation of resources plays a big role in bridging the gap between the care needs and care delivery. The optimisation of resources ensure that the future of aged care is equitable, efficient, and sustainable.

Ellie: If the way older Australians accessed aged care was compared to swimming from one end of a pool to the other, my role helps ensure they are in the right swim lane. Given the different levels of swimming ability, people have individual care needs – some may just need a pair of goggles, while others also need a kick board and flippers.

When someone is already in need of help, a bit like treading water, it can be difficult to navigate and understand the aged care system to be able to reach the other end. I like to think of my role as making a difference to the lives of older Australians by throwing out the life buoy and helping that person out of the deep end, across the waves to calmer waters.

Lauren: My role requires me to do the An-ACC assessments which determines the resident’s funding in a residential facility. Making sure they are scored appropriately so they get the appropriate care needed.

Meghan: I feel my work gives people validation, empowerment as well as a reminder that clients are not alone and that there are services out there. I believe the service centre’s role is the critical bridge between the journey (beginning to end) for the client or representative, understanding this process, as well as the full benefits Aged Care can offer.

I believe Aged Care’s involvement is a cultural reminder that we are all unique, and as such, must be provided indignity and respect- no matter what stage in life we are.

Erin: I am to maximise the potential of my role to improve the lives of our aged populationby ensuring an accurate assessment of their capability, by doing so provides the right funding for the community and loved ones who support them. 

Secondly, I feel warmth as I spend time and converse with my patients. I know that for me, it may only be for a short period but for them, sharing their stories and holding a conversation with someone makes their day, if not their week. Listening  and sharing a smile can make any day brighter.

What makes being part of APM Assessment Services team special?

Fiona: The team at APM are as wonderful as they are diverse.  The special thing is that in my role, I may not see any colleagues for weeks on end, but I use their talents, kindness, shared understanding, and knowledge every day to be better in my role.

Technology is our friend and all colleagues, no matter what their role, are always just a click away and they all invariably share themselves and their skills with generosity, care, and with good humour and I am grateful to them all.

Myita: I like that there are opportunities to grow and expand in our career. APM offers the support of a large organisation, along with expertise in various fields.

Ellie: I am grateful to be part of a team where we have a common goal of helping others to enable better lives. We are all so passionate about what we do and super focused on good outcomes for our clients. It is special to feel like a valued member of the team and we each play a part in making a positive difference in someone’s life.

Lauren: I have never felt so welcomed at a new job before. My team is very remote, and majority of our communication is over video calls. However, when we do meet it is like we have known each other for a long time. It is truly an honour to be a part of this amazing team.

Meghan: No two days are the same for me here. On any given day, I’ll be given opportunities for self-development and growth, exposure to a multitude of cultures and traditions, a variety of ad-hoc duties and the chance to speak to people of all ages.

There are constant opportunities to improve your oral and written communication skills and I’ve become quite expert at problem-solving and prioritising effectively. I’ve also gained a deep understanding of government policies and procedures, which is a valuable asset. The thing I love most working in the service centre is our incredible multi-culture team and being exposed everything to amazing cultures, traditions, and milestones.

Erin: The team at APM has unrivalled communication and support. Their care and consideration for their employees are something to be proud of. The team communicates and listens through multiple channels and social catchups, which makes me feel more confident in doing what I do best. 

Curious about where your career might grow with APM?

We help people become their best selves, so they can live their best lives.

At APM we are strengthened by diversity. We are committed to providing a work environment in which everyone is included, treated fairly and with respect.

We encourage applications from people of all ages, nationalities, abilities and cultures including indigenous peoples, the LGBTQI+ community and people with a disability.

Visit careers.apm.net.au today to view all our current opportunities.

Author

Anna Burchfield

For media enquiries, please contact

adrian.bradley@apm.net.au

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