The Government-funded Short Term Restorative Care (STRC) programme helps older Australians to maintain their independence and keep living at home, but what happens when the eight-week program is over? Well, the answer right now, in many cases, is not enough. STRC is an early intervention program for older adults who are at risk of losing their independence through difficulties with day-to-day activities such as bathing, dressing, shopping and feeding themselves. While all providers run their program differently, participants with Southern Cross Care (SA, NT & VIC) Inc have 8 weeks of intensive support to work on their mobility, diet, fitness and overall health and wellbeing. While current guidelines direct the running of the program, after they are finished many clients are left to fend for themselves. Research shows that when there is an abrupt stop in services older Australians can quickly lose the beneficial gains achieved during the program, with their health and independence declining once more. But a research grant funded by the Aged Care Research & Industry Innovation Australia (ARIIA) aims to help STRC participants continue to manage their health after the program ends. The grant is funding the development and trialling of a self-management workbook, My health in my hands, which participants will be guided through by the Southern Cross Care STRC allied health professionals during their program. The workbook includes evidence-based activities to help people set health goals and learn about healthy activities, with a focus on the ongoing self-management of their health. Once the program has ended, STRC participants can use the workbook for guidance on eating healthily, exercising, and looking after their wellbeing in a way that is both simple and the most beneficial to them. The development of the workbook has included research into best practice methods, such as positive goal setting, and co-design with older people who have already completed the STRC program with Southern Cross Care.
Media release for our 2022 ARIIA-funded "Better discharge pathways for community-dwelling aged care clients following short-term restorative programs" project
1 May 2023
Research grant to give older Australians the tools they need to self-manage health