Aged Care in Emergency Program

Aged Care in Emergency Program
Lismore Base Hospital (LBH) in collaboration with North Coast Medicare Local has launched the Aged Care in Emergency (ACE) Program.

Wayne Jones, Acting Executive Director of the Richmond Clarence Health Service Group said, “The ACE Program is currently being rolled out across selected public hospitals in NSW.”

“ACE is a model of care specifically aimed to improve the management of residents from Residential Aged Care Facilities when they become acutely unwell, by providing support and care in their own place of residence and efficient flow through the Emergency Department (ED), if a presentation is required,” Mr Jones said.

“Isla Attewell and Kathleen Shaw, Clinical Nurse Consultants (CNC) – ACE Program, are excited about the potential for the Program to prevent unnecessary presentations of aged care residents to the ED,” said Wayne Jones.

“During the planning and implementation of the Program, Isla and Kathleen have been working closely with Residential Aged Care Facilities, General Practitioners (GP), Medicare Local, Emergency and Aged Care Specialists with the shared goal of benefiting our residents/patients.”

“Staff in the Residential Aged Care Facilities have been trained in the use of standard guidelines that relate to common problems experienced by residents. The Staff will refer to the guideline, where appropriate and make contact with the ACE Clinical Nurse Consultant by phone for support.”

“If the resident requires transfer to the ED, the CNC will do their best to make sure care is expedited through the ED, so the resident is able to return home or be admitted to the Hospital in a timely fashion,” Mr Jones said.

Chris Gavaghan, Medical Director, LBH ED said, “Each year in excess of 200 residents present to the ED for assessment and management of common health problems.”

“ACE, in conjunction with the resident’s GP, will support residents to receive the care they need in their home and avoid an unnecessary trip to Emergency,” said Dr Gavaghan.

Marilyn Jolley, Acting Regional Director of UnitedCare Ageing, North Coast Region acknowledged that UnitedCare were proud to be part of this exciting partnership.

Ms Jolley said, “This kind of networking and engagement with GPs, Medicare Local and NNSW LHD to provide acute care for residents in their own environment will greatly reduce the stress and anxiety often experienced when residents fall ill, enhance recovery times, and optimise wellness for people in our care.

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