The milestone of the initiative, which was launched late last year in an effort to export aged care expertise to China in a joint venture between three leading South Australian aged care providers, has seen the successful graduation from the AAWS ‘Intensive Elderly Care Program’ by 20 employees from the Traditional Chinese Medicine Hospital in Shandong.
Senior nursing and care staff from Eldercare, Life Care and Southern Cross Care led the course which is a 12 month long education and coaching program for managers and staff of leading residential facilities in China.
AAWS Chief Executive Janet Spouse says the initiative led by AAWS is a South Australian success story.
“AAWS is helping to shape the future of China’s aged care industry by sharing our cutting edge, specialised knowledge with our Chinese counterparts,” Ms Spouse explains.
“More than 248 million Chinese people will be aged over 60 by the year 2020 and our AAWS training is designed to ‘fast track’ the knowledge and skills of China’s aged care workforce so they quickly develop the capacity to support their rapidly ageing population.
“Aged care is a growing and respected profession and this form of international collaboration is going to help China meet the needs of its ageing population into the future.
“It is an incredibly exciting time for AAWS with our first group of students graduating from the first course we’ve delivered ‘on the ground’ in China.”
She says the students from the hospital worked hard to quickly develop specialist aged care skills and demonstrated their ambition to create residential facilities that are desirable places for elderly people to live.
Ms Spouse adds that students received comprehensive training in a range of specialised areas, including clinical and care skills, policies and procedures as well as clinical governance.
“As an international leader in aged care knowledge and expertise, AAWS will continue to share our skills and work collaboratively with our Chinese business partners to build a uniquely Chinese model of care which is best for Government, for business, and most importantly, best for older people.”
Ms Spouse says now that the first graduates have gone through, AAWS will be focusing on further supporting those already involved in the program, as well as exploring new opportunities.
“We have a few things on the boil,” she says.
“We will be providing a further six months support with this group of graduates to help embed their new learnings, which also continuing to expand our business development across China with a range of other organisations.
“AAWS is very active in working in China to develop ageing well business activity with a focus on consultancy and providing aged care expertise.
“We have business proposals out which we are hoping to get traction on during our next visit to China in November.”