PRACTIS: PRimary health and Aged Care Translation and Interpreting Services
Australians living in Residential Aged Care Facilities represent some of the sickest and most vulnerable members of the community and frequently suffer from acute, chronic and complex conditions. One third of Residential Aged Care Facility residents in Victoria are from a non-English speaking background and the number is projected to increase over the next ten years.
There is strong evidence that effective communication with Residential Aged Care Facility residents is necessary for equitable, safe and high quality care. Indeed, Commonwealth and State policies highlight patients’ “right to an accredited interpreter if [they] need one when using a publicly funded healthcare service”. Yet, there is little data on current communication practices in Australian Residential Aged Care Facilities for residents with limited English proficiency. There is no information on rates of interpreter use, what factors influence staff decisions to use interpreters or the impact of communication barriers on the delivery of healthcare services.
The overall aim of the PRACTIS project is to improve the delivery of care to older Australians with limited English proficiency living in Residential Aged Care Facilities.
This project was supported by the Australian Government’s Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) as part of the Rapid Applied Research Translation program through Monash Partners.
The aims of Phase 1 were to:
- evaluate the relationship between communication barriers and unplanned emergency department transfers for residents with limited English proficiency and
- explore experiences of communication (with both staff and fellow residents) for residents with limited English proficiency.
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This project is supported by a Monash University Faculty of Arts and Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences Interdisciplinary Research Seed Funding grant.
The aim of Phase 2 is to develop a framework to improve communication with residents of Residential Aged Care Facilities with limited English proficiency.
Phase 2 has been temporarily suspended. Upon resumption of this project, the development of a framework to improve communication will be informed by changes in the communication strategies used by staff and residents of Residential Aged Care Facilities that have resulted due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
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