The conference focused on the future, the now and technology use in the aged care sector with the awards ceremony held to acknowledge and celebrate technology successes in aged care at the Awards Gala Dinner on 21 November.
Among those awarded for their innovation in the growing industry was Alzheimer's Australia (now Dementia Australia) Victoria’s Manager Business Development Learning and Development, Dr Tanya Petrovich, for the organisations Virtual Dementia Experience (VDE).
Dr Petrovich and Alzheimer's Australia were awarded for their efforts for ‘Best aged care software development and or deployment’ through the introduction and use of EDIE - an Educational Dementia Immersive Experience (EDIE).
“The purpose of EDIE – Virtual Reality (VR) tool and workshop is to improve the lives of people living with dementia by empowering aged care workers to improve dementia care practice,” Dr Petrovich explains.
“This VR experience is a superior educational experience that will benefit residential, home/community care or retirement living care workers by giving them greater insight and understanding to the world of people living with dementia.
“Traditional dementia awareness and care education methods have not had the desired impact on dementia care practices in aged care.
“At Alzheimer's Australia Victoria, after more than 30 years of delivering dementia education in the traditional workshop setting through PowerPoint, group discussion, and case studies, it was felt that a more experiential education using VR as a tool would give aged care workers a more empathetic understanding of dementia.”
Aged care provider IRT Group are well known for their interest in technology and aged care and were also award recipients at the Gala Dinner for ‘Best solution that provides ongoing consumer independence’.
Their now award-winning initiative, IRT Connect, utilises Samsung tablets that residents can download an app on and use for all their entertainment, health care plans, daily activities, budget information, staff and care visits even menu ordering. Their Care Share app also enables families and care cohorts to help customize the entertainment and daily activities to the areas of specific client interest.
Other award winners include:
- Konnekt who won ‘Best consumer friendly product or system deployment’ for their Konnekt Videophone
- MiCare and Illuminance Solutions Pty Ltd were both awarded a High Commendation for ‘Best workforce efficiency or quality improvement solution’, with Sandwai taking out the award for Sandwai Home and Community Care Software
- NCIS Group took the top spot in ‘Best application of business intelligence to leverage value from big data’ for their Anglicare - Business Intelligence I.T Infrastructure