Home' Community Care Review : CCR Nov-Dec 2015 Contents DRYSDALE
Manufacturer of quality care products
Our HomeCareTM range of beds are designed
to fit comfortably in your home environment.
The HomeCareTM bed is packed with state of
the art technology for safety and comfort and
comes in a range of sizes, from single to king.
to June 2017, the Ending the Isolation
project aims to find out how people with
deafblindness are currently being identified
and supported in the aged care sector. It will
also develop a screening tool, undertake a
large prevalence study and create resources
for the aged care sector and families to
better support elderly people affected by
both vision and hearing loss.
Wittorff, who is also the lead researcher,
says organisations that register interest
will be offered the whole suite of resources
developed for free as well as associated
training for those wanting more intensive
support to bring about change.
He says aged care recipients are
probably quite well-identified through
Australia's aged care assessment and
funding systems, but he is not confident
they are effectively supported from there.
"I don't think that's anyone's fault,
because I don't think people have the
education or training to be able to make
those changes. I think that they would do
the changes if they knew about it. There's
no question about that."
This project aims to spread awareness
and provide the sector with the resources
they need to make and embed the changes
to provide best-practice support.
REMAIN AT HOME
A combined vision and hearing impairment
requires a distinct approach to ensure a
person's needs in relation to both hearing
and vision are addressed, but many of the
solutions can be quite simple, says Wittorff.
The disability can impact a person's
ability to remain in their home, and often
depends on the level of family support
available, he says.
"Early intervention is the key to
supporting people like Betty to adjust
emotionally to the impact of a combined
vision and hearing impairment and to
enable them to regain confidence and
independence," Wittorff says.
Providing good equipment, such as
simple alerting devices, decluttering to
remove trip hazards and modifying the
environment through lighting and contrast
can help maintain people's independence
at home, he says.
In Betty's case, for example, Wittorff says
her current goals are to resume reading and
listening to music, which she stopped after
her neighbours complained it was too loud.
He says reading options could be large
print or audio, if her vision or hearing is
adequate. Listening options include a
loop and FM systems for social situations
to work alongside her hearing aid, and
infrared headphones or neck loops, which
can improve a person's ability to hear the
television and listen to music without
having to turn the volume up.
Elsewhere, Wittorff says a visit alarm
system has been installed so as not to
miss visitors and she wears a clip-on tactile
pager that vibrates when the doorbell or
phone rings or smoke alarm activates. Her
phone has large contrasting numbers and
the volume can be amplified making it
easier to hear conversations.
"Adjustments such as improved lighting
over the kitchen counter, making use of
contrast and a few devices in the kitchen
meant that Betty was motivated to learn
techniques that would enable her to cook
again," he says.
To address her next goal, Betty is
going to have orientation and mobility
lessons to rebuild her confidence to go out
independently using a cane and she is also
considering a guide dog, says Wittorff. n
Partners from the community and
residential aged care sector are
needed to take part in the Ending the
• aged care providers in WA are needed
for initial research to develop the
screening tool and test for prevalence
• providers nationwide are invited
to participate to trial the full suite
of resources developed, receive
training and provide feedback
Contact Matthew Wittorff at
or visit senses.org.au to express
interest in participating.
aaa community care review | 35
Links Archive CCR MAY 2016 Navigation Previous Page Next Page