Aged care nurse blows whistle on care of our elderly
A BUNDABERG aged care nurse has written an open letter in the wake of allegations against Kepnock Grove aged care facility, where she was formerly employed.
She gives a stark account in her own words of a broken industry model focused more on maximising funding than on care outcomes for its patients. Her fears are not just for Kepnock, but for anyone in an aged care facility.
It is a cry for help to the Federal Government to reform a profit-based structure that is failing the most vulnerable elderly people in our communities.
The nurse, who asked to remain anonymous, has worked in the aged care industry for the past nine years.
She said people were paying thousands and thousands of dollars to be cared for, and they were not getting what they were paying for.
"It is all about the bottom line," she said.
She believes that many carers, in multiple sites she worked, did not report incidents because it could mean the end of their careers.
"Most carers are casual so it is quite easy to put you out and not give you work.
"They have their ways and means - reducing your hours, not giving you shifts."
The nurse spoke about the unrealistic time constraints on the carers.
She said they were supposed to get a patient undressed, washed, re-dressed and get them to the table for breakfast and make the bed in four-and-a-half minutes.
"The whole thing is unrealistic."
The nurse said they needed to scrap the whole system and start again
"There's a lot of funding in aged care and who knows where the money is going.
"The system has to be looked at - it's not working."