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Who matters in the care home?

How one group of experts is aiming to encourage good practice in care homes.

A buzz term you may increasingly come across when you’re researching care homes is “patient-centric care” or its stable-mate “patient-centred care”. It’s all about involving patients and their families in decisions about how residents receive their care.

For some care homes, this could mean a significant shift in thinking. Rosemary Hurtley, an experienced occupational therapist and Pat Duff, an independent advisor to care homes with long experience in nursing and gerontology, have developed a framework that they hope to introduce into care homes across the country.

The 360 standard framework is about improving the care of older people by making them the focus of the care. The resident in the care home, the staff and that person’s relatives co-operate and communicate to create positive relationships. The project aims to create a culture with everyone understanding each other’s roles. The framework also gives everyone the opportunity to measure how well this level of care is being achieved – something that is difficult to do.

The task before the team is to encourage care homes to take up this programme. It’s going to require some serious education and marketing to show care home owners and managers the benefits and to motivate staff to act on what they learn.

The duo believe that ensuring relatives and the resident themselves are aware of the framework will help them to ask questions when they’re choosing a home, and give them realistic expectations during residency.

Do you feel your parent’s wishes are sufficiently recognised in their care home? As a relative, do you have the opportunity to be involved in care discussions? Do the care homes you’ve visited talk about putting the resident at the centre of their care – and do you think they really do? Join the discussion by commenting below.

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