On Aged Care Employee Day on August 7, Dementia Australia acknowledged the hundreds of thousands of people working in the industry across Australia.
Dementia Australia CEO Maree McCabe said the day, which serves to thank, honour and celebrate aged care employees, is an important opportunity to recognise the important role they play in the lives of people living with dementia, their families and carers.
“With 70 per cent of the 447,000 Australians with dementia living in the community and 50 per cent of all those in residential aged care having a diagnosis of dementia, almost every worker across the country is involved in caring for people impacted by dementia,” Ms McCabe said.
“We acknowledge the aged care staff providing high quality care for their professionalism, compassion, empathy, dignity and the care they provide.”
Dementia Advocate Anne Tudor marked the day by thanking an aged care worker who cared for her married partner, Edie Mayhew.
“Julie and Edie were like two naughty peas in a pod, they loved the same clothes, the same shops, the same sports, the same sense of fun; they laughed together and went off on exciting weekly ventures,” Ms Tudor said.
“Dementia was irrelevant to their relationship. And when I asked them what they did when they returned, they triumphantly said, ‘we’re not telling’. Julie was pure gold.”
“While the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety has brought to light some of the harrowing experiences of people living in aged care, the vast majority of aged care workers are passionate and professional workers who provide outstanding care, and this is the day we recognise them,” Ms McCabe said.
“It is essential that organisations continue to invest in developing a workplace culture that inspires and supports their teams to deliver quality dementia care.”
Aged Care Employee Day was initiated by aged care provider Whiddon in 2018 and is now led and co-ordinated by Leading Age Services Australia (LASA).
Find out more about Dementia Australia.