Speaker: Michael Carley, Safety and Risk, Villa Maria Catholic Homes
Safety and the aged care sector
In July we were lucky once again to have a speaker who is so obviously passionate about the work they do to make a real difference in health and safety. Michael Carley has been working with Villa Maria Catholic Homes (VMCH) for just over a year, so he freely admits that there is still a long way to go to improve their safe systems of work -many of us can identify with that! However, the progress made so far inspires him to continue in what he described as a very fufilling sector in which to work.
Aged care is a growth industry, but it also presents many challenges. The most common risks that he outlined have also come to light during the current Royal Commission into the sector, so it was a very timely presentation.
Michael noted that residents are coming in at later stages of life when they need a higher level of care. Another challenge is that the average age of the workforce is 55 and comes from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
The greatest risks arise from inadequate training and competency, but Michael's main message was to "be courageous in addressing risks", which includes thinking laterally about how to address them. He outlined a number of innovative solutions he and VMCH have made to date and he looks forward to continue making improvements.
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