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LASA looks to address regional and rural care challenges in SA

A number of key issues and the additional challenges known to face rural aged care providers will be at the heart of discussions at an upcoming aged care industry forum in a region with one of the nation's oldest age profiles.

An Aged Care Industry Forum is coming to rural South Australia (Source: Shutterstock)
An Aged Care Industry Forum is coming to rural South Australia (Source: Shutterstock)

Held on 1 December in the Yorke Peninsula, South Australia, the event organised by Leading Aged Services Australia (LASA) South Australia aims to provide deeper insight into the changes happening in the sector for rural and regional providers.

With the population projections showing that the 65-84 and 84+ age groups in the Yorke Peninsula and Lower North statistical division expected to increase by 32 percent and 71 percent respectively between 2011-2041, LASA South Australia State Manager Rosetta Rosa says planning plays a vital role.

“It is vital that planning is carried out now to ensure the right policy settings are in place to best deliver services to older Australians living on the Yorke Peninsula,” she says.

“This includes retirement villages, residential aged care, home and community care, and other infrastructure to meet future needs.

“If our governments and communities are not making adequate investments into aged care, then we are going to end up with a lot more people occupying hospital beds because they have nowhere else to go.”

As well as this, Ms Rosa says that the impacts of greater geographical isolation affect a number of areas, including: workforce costs to engage and retain staff; access to allied health professionals; limited internet coverage in some areas and limited catchment areas resulting in smaller scale facilities and services.

One of the key presenters, Vice President of Australian Medical Association (AMA) South Australia Dr Chris Moy, will be presenting a session on end of life care and digital health.

Dr Moy says with Yorke Peninsula’s growing and ageing population together with increasing rates of chronic disease in the community will drive greater demand for end of life and palliative care services.

“Good end of life care has such an important role to play in helping older Australians living on the Peninsula to live well, maintain hope and stay connected with their families and loved ones at this stage of their lives.”

Talking Aged Care’s own Managing Editor Margot White will also take to the stage to discuss the role of media in aged care and how providers can use the media strategically.

“In this day and age the media plays a huge role in everyday life for all industries and aged care is no different,” she explains.

“A media presence can either be positive or negative so it’s important to know how to use it to promote the positives.”

Other topics to be addressed at the free Aged Care Industry Forum include: digital health, strategies for hospital avoidance, workforce and management issues.

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