Unity – In Name and In Deed

This week I presented a paper at the LS Tri-state conference in Albury. I set out why it was critical to embed consumer directed care into residential aged care, and the 15 steps to achieve this. There is a link below to the white paper upon which the talk was based. I presented a challenge to the audience that who-ever was genuinely delivering CDC in their residential aged care services, I’d love to meet them and promote their facility. 
As I left the theatre, Charmaine Waugh from Australian Unity, came up to me with a few members of her team and very excitedly announced that they were doing it – they were building and delivering aged care in a genuinely person centred way.  She gave me the latest Australian Aging Agenda(Jan-Feb 2014) and implored me to read the article on their model of care and then she faded into the crowd like Zoro. I almost imaged her saying (Antonio Banderas’ voice please) “my work here is done. I am now off to save another village”.  Now I have since read the article but I’ll get to that in a minute.
That evening is the obligatory conference dinner – the theme was Jail House Rock. I didn’t put my name down at any particular table, preferring to leave it to fate as to where I ended up.   I find it is always the right one and this night was no exception.  Table number 1 was the only table with spare chairs so off I trot and was greeted with genuine friendliness and interest by those occupying it.  Coincidence would have it that most were from Australian Unity.  I had a ball with these people and what struck me was their authenticity. They were enthusiastic about their work and roles, engaging and, based on their genuine excitement about new ideas that they had for improving their service quality and viability, they were also innovative.
As I read the article, which did indeed reflect a model of service and care that placed them firmly in the person centred – consumer directed care quadrant, I reflected to myself, this is one organisation that is unified in name and in deed.  Thank you Charmaine and team!
I’d love to hear your stories of greatness and achievements in person centred care and consumer directed care.