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Healthcare Assignment: A Discussion On Aged Care Diversity Framework


Task: Context
Healthcare services, regardless of who delivers them (government, non-government or private individuals and organisations) are influenced by politics and the societies within which they operate. Politics and societal expectations determine the health care priorities, policies, funding and delivery of healthcare services. As a health professional comprehending the context of your work and employment, and its influence on the provision of healthcare services, is of paramount importance.

In this healthcare assignment, you will investigate and discuss the influence of policies on the provision of healthcare.

Choose one (1) of the following public policies for discussion:
• National Disability Strategy national_disability_strategy_2010_2020.pdf
• Aged Care Diversity Framework
• National Strategic Framework for Chronic Conditions
Discuss the following in relation to your chosen public policy:
1. Who are the key ‘players’ or stakeholders who influence decisions for this policy?
2. What are the current health service challenges and/or problems in this sector?
3. Which challenges or problems does this policy address?
4. How might the current policy (and related healthcare services) impact 2 social determinants of health for someone with this health issue within this sector? (For example, how does the policy affect the social determinants of health for someone with a disability, or someone living in an aged care facility?)


Overview OfHealthcare Assignment
Healthcare service is the most important sector to get importance from the government, non-government organizations and private individuals. Though, healthcare services and support are highly influenced by the expectation of the society and a nation’s politics (Fatima, Malik& Shabbir, 2018). Thus, healthcare services, required fundings and policies are determined by societal expectations and politics. Specially, Australia is a diverse country consisting of different religion, sexuality, spirituality, socio-economic background and culture, which sometimes causes major challenges for this sector.Aged care diversity framework has been chosen to be discussed over here. Aged care diversity frame work is one of the important and timely steps of Australia. The aim of this framework is to provide required healthcare support to all regardless of their life experience or background. A planned mechanism is provided to the government, consumers, aged care service providers and leading organizations by the aged care diversity framework.

Key Players or Stakeholders of Health Policies
According toBoaz, Hanney, Borst, O’Shea&Kok, (2018), stakeholders are the persons who are directly or indirectly related toa business and have something to gain or to loss from that business planning or project.As stated byEssinketal., (2020), there are many identified stakeholders related to health policies and they can be segregated into three level such as national level, regional level and local level. The major stakeholders of aged care health policies are the elder people, aged patients, family members of the elderly ones, physicians, health care workers and other support providers. Other key players of health policies are insurance companies, providers, pharmaceutical firms, medical equipment providers, transport providers, healthcare organizations and the government. Healthcare is mainly delivered by the providers such as physicians, nurses, care takers, clinicians, therapists, chiropractors and others who deliver different modalities of care. Government is also a stakeholder who pays for the health of public, which mainly covers all the expenses of treatment for the elderly and the poor. Another important stakeholder is insurance company, though they exist mainly to gain profit from healthcare industries and its clients. These health insurance companies only cover such people who are rich, who have no chronic and pre-existing diseases and who are healthy enough that they never need any medical care. Therefore, such companies try not to provide coverage for the elderly people.

Current Health Service Challenges
Issues related to aged care services are the current challenges of the healthcare service. Two major challenges are lack of enough funding and shortage of efficient workforce for this sector.

Lack of Funding-
Though, there is an aged care diversity framework action plan has been set up in order to provide effective health care towards the elderly people, yet due to proper awareness and lack of funding, senior Australians from LGBTI and CALD communities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are suffering from issues such as poor health care services, lack of nutritious foods, medicines, transportation and stable income. Therefore, they need more attention from the government regarding Social Determinants of Health (SDOH) (McClean,2021). However, awareness programs and enough flow of funding from higher authorities can solve such issues.

Workforce Shortage in Aged Care Sector-
According toAdamson, Cortis, Brennan&Charlesworth, (2017), there is a noticeable growing demand of aged care facilities in Australia as there is an impressive growth of life expectancy in the country. In current Australia, there is an expectation to live another twenty years from the people of sixty-five years old age group. However, the pivotal challenge for the residential aged care industry is workforce shortages. The workforce shortage is growing with the growing demand of active and efficient workers in aged care industry. According to a survey, by the 2030, this workforce shortage will balloon to 110,000 and within 2050, the number will reach to 400,000. As stated byHodgkin, Warburton, Savy& Moore, (2017), there is an urgent need of nearly 17000 new workers in aged care facilities to meet the requirement of the country’s one of the serious issues.

Challenges in Aged Care Policies
According toFine& Davidson, (2018), funding is such an issue that lies at the core of all challenges in aged care policies. According to the Royal Commission report regarding this sector, many of theissues are booming due to the lack of enough funding. The Aged Care Act 1997 is an important law that covers aged care through Government funding, which is not evaluated regularly to meet the growing expenditure. Though, there are providers, stakeholders and efficient workers who are interested to provide professional quality service or medical support to the users and expected clients whether at their own home or at the client’s home. However,without enough funding professionalism does not work with only compassion.

As stated byWilsonetal., (2021), Aged Care Diversity Framework has been launched in the year 2017, in order to meet the requirements of the clients coming from different social backgrounds. However, with the aim to continue this framework effectively, the aged care sector needs a supervision from the government.As described byDineen-Griffin, Benrimoj, & Garcia-Cardenas,(2020), in order to maintain regulations and review methods of The Aged Care Act 1997, the health sector needs strong governance which comes only through strict regulations. A major portion of this governance issue is related to the Government that has no person to answer for this issue. The aged care sector is in a serious need of funding that only can flow from the top regulatory bodies like the Government. As stated byAggar, Gordon, Thomas, Wadsworth& Bloomfield, (2018), it has been identified by The National Primary Health Care Strategy that there are major issues in Australia’s health care sector caused by growing numbers of chronic diseases, hectic work pressures, a growing population of aged people and uncappable health sector workers. Some of the chronic diseases such as arthritis, asthma, mental and behavioral condition, diabetes and most importantly heart and vascular diseases are considered to be Australia’s major health concerns. The major victims of all these chronic diseases are the old aged population. Therefore, it is important to deploy medical care professionals, again which needs enough funding.

How Policies Affects Social Determinants of Health for People in Aged Care Facility
There is a major connection between public health and public policies. Public health specially health of elderly people is completely dependent to these public policies. Therefore, issue related policies affect the social determinants of health. Social Determinants of Health (SDOH) for people in aged care facility means the social, environmental and economical conditions of the old aged clients to maintain their physical health, mental health and other well-being. Safe housing, affordable transportation, reliable assistance, stable income and secured employment are the undeniable factors that are related to social determinants of health in aged care facilities.

Economic Conditions-
All these previously discussed factors are directly related to funding and therefore, proper aged care facilities are becoming distant day by day due to the lack of funding. An alarming number of aged populationswho are currently struggling with SDOH-related factorsare at a severe risk of morbidity and poor health, because, policies made of shortage of funding affects the social determinants of health for people in aged care facilities. As stated byHarfieldetal., (2018), according to a survey conducted over 1590 people who are at the age of fifty or above are experiencing all these issues caused mainly by the short flow of fund in various policies such asThe Aged Care Act 1997, Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme and Medicareand therefore, they are concerns about their future.

Social Backgrounds-
Social and cultural diversity influences healthcare practices and the main victims of this issue are senior Australians from LGBTI and CALD communities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Major policies such as Medicare and Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme do not provide special care for such people. According toGwynne, Jeffries& Lincoln, (2018), safe housing is another serious issue related to aged care facility. Majority of the elderly Australians are preferring to stay at their own sophisticated homes and to get effective old age care solutions over there by the efficient medical professionals. However, another issue even with this facility is that there is limited information of regional services and support for residential old age care. Sometimes, clients have to wait for a long period of more than thirty-four months to get their funding. This delay of long waiting list of funding is also considered as a pivotal issue of this sectorwhich demands urgent government intervention.

On a gap of every three years the diversity framework will be updated and evaluated with the cooperation of the government in order to mitigate the barriers affecting access to the needy elderly people of the country. Having so many challenges, the aim of this framework is to provide equitable access of the medical supports to all people.

Adamson, E., Cortis, N., Brennan, D., & Charlesworth, S. (2017). Social care and migration policy in Australia: Emerging intersections. Australian Journal of Social Issues, 52(1), 78-94.
Aggar, C., Gordon, C. J., Thomas, T. H., Wadsworth, L., & Bloomfield, J. (2018).Evaluation of a community transition to professional practice program for graduate registered nurses in Australia. Nurse education in practice, 32, 101-107. Boaz, A., Hanney, S., Borst, R., O’Shea, A., &Kok, M. (2018). How to engage stakeholders in research: design principles to support improvement. Health research policy and systems, 16(1), 1-9.
Dineen-Griffin, S., Benrimoj, S. I., & Garcia-Cardenas, V. (2020).Primary health care policy and vision for community pharmacy and pharmacists in Australia. Healthcare assignmentPharmacy Practice (Granada), 18(2).
Essink, D. R., Ratsavong, K., Bally, E., Fraser, J., Xaypadith, S., Vonglokham, M., ...&Kounnavong, S. (2020). Developing a national health research agenda for Lao PDR: prioritising the research needs of stakeholders. Global health action, 13(sup2), 1777000.
Fatima, T., Malik, S. A., & Shabbir, A. (2018). Hospital healthcare service quality, patient satisfaction and loyalty: An investigation in context of private healthcare systems. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management. Fine, M., & Davidson, B. (2018). The marketization of care: Global challenges and national responses in Australia. Current Sociology, 66(4), 503-516.
Gwynne, K., Jeffries, T., & Lincoln, M. (2018).Improving the efficacy of healthcare services for Aboriginal Australians. Australian Health Review, 43(3), 314-322.
Harfield, S. G., Davy, C., McArthur, A., Munn, Z., Brown, A., & Brown, N. (2018). Characteristics of Indigenous primary health care service delivery models: a systematic scoping review. Globalization and health, 14(1), 1-11. Hodgkin, S., Warburton, J., Savy, P., & Moore, M. (2017). Workforce crisis in residential aged care: insights from rural, older workers. Australian Journal of Public Administration, 76(1), 93-105.
McClean, T. (2021). LGBTI attitudes towards and experiences of aged care: Results of an exploratory survey. Australasian Journal on Ageing.
Wilson, T., Temple, J., Brijnath, B., Utomo, A., & McDonald, P. (2021). The ageing of Asian migrant populations in Australia: projections and implications for aged care services. Asian Population Studies, 1-26.


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