Testimonial from Tainui Village – New Plymouth

Upon reading one policy everything fell neatly into place. I found her documentation to be outstanding.  It is very reassuring to know that every policy and procedure is the most up to date and designed to meet audit requirements.  All her forms are easily accessible and very user friendly.   We can instantly benchmark against others.  At the click of a button we can analyse falls, infections and adverse events.   Creating graphs and other information for Board reports takes minutes rather than hours.

Having come from a background of many years in QA, HSE and Electronic Document Management in the Oil and Gas Industry, when I entered the aged care sector, it was a huge “eye opener”.  After sitting through several handovers and meetings and listening to discussions on medications etc I felt as if I was listening to a foreign language.  Oh my goodness I thought and then Gillian’s documentation arrived together with a visit from her shortly after.

Gillian’s enthusiasm and commitment for both the aged care sector and her documentation is contagious.  I feel I can now discuss, with the knowledge I have acquired in a few short months, aspects of aged care I never knew existed.  Gillian is only a phone call or email away and all queries are always answered promptly, no matter how minor.

 

Thank you very much Gillian.

Lois Lash – Quality Assurance

Tainui Village –  October 2017

 

HCSL Mobile app for Internal Audits

Mobile app now available for conducting your residential care ARRC specific internal audits.

There are a full range of internal audits pre-loaded ready for use. Collectively, these audits reflect the criteria Certification auditors will be checking.

 

This process gives you the opportunity to be sure you’re on track with achieving compliance. The findings auto-populate into corrective action tables which prompt timely addressing of these corrective actions. This system syncs with your main computer system and makes reporting to management and Governance boards very easy.

 

The Certification auditors (after given specific access authority with your permission) are also able to access the results of the internal audits you’ve completed.

To view a brief video on the use of this system, click here.

Attendee Testimonial for Aged Care Education Study Day – July 2017

Topics included: Quality & Risk Management, Clinical Leadership, Clinical Documentation, EPoA, ARRC, Communication and Difficult Conversations

 

I am writing this endorsement on behalf of my colleague and myself, in relation to our attendance at the study day you hosted 5 July 2017.

The topics you presented were most relevant to our Registered Nurse role within the aged care sector, and between us both provided new learning opportunities, as well as refreshing the current knowledge we already held.

You addressed each session in a professional and engaging manner that held our attention, complemented by comprehensive written material as well as PowerPoint presentations, along with plenty of opportunity for questions and comments from the floor.

Gillian you are one of very few speakers that is able to hold my attention for more than one session let alone a whole study day, a perfect balance between speech and conversational styles!

We were also most impressed by the quality of the complementary gift bag that was given to each attendee containing not only goodies to help us through the day, but with something to take back to the workplace, I acknowledge both Cubro and Ebos for their support with this.

The venue was great with easy access and good parking, and it was clean and refreshing providing plenty of comfort and personal space for those attending. I will be recommending my associates to make a note in their diary for next time. Thank you Gillian

Kind regards

Lyn Black

Bloomfield Court Retirement Home – Canterbury

Weight management goals in care planning

When care planning, the goals or objectives developed for each aspect of care need to be measurable.  This ensures you’re able to evaluate progress and determine whether the goal has been met or not.  The concern is making sure an appropriate goal is set.  While we look at this from a clinical perspective, we must always remember the resident as the central focus and director where they are able to provide input into what the care plan relays.  People have choice within their capacity and sometimes as nurses, we may not agree with a choice made by our patients / residents in aged care.

When guiding weight management goals from a clinical perspective, Liz Beaglehole, Registered Dietitian has offered the below guide.

Ideal weight range in the care process

Body mass index is still helpful in determining healthy weights for older adults.  A healthy BMI range for adults over 65 actually shifts upwards as compared to adults. So a healthy BMI for older adults has been found to be BMI – 22 – 27kg/m2. A BMI above 32kg/m2 would suggest obesity, a BMI below 20 suggests underweight, and below 18.5 is malnourished.

To work out the BMI: (weight/height²).  Example case:  height = 1.5m and weight = 45kg

  1. We need the height in metres and the weight in Kg.
  2. The height needs to be squared. So a height of 1.5m = 2.25 when squared.
  3. Then the BMI is the weight in Kg divided by the height²

Example:  weight = 45kg divided by 2.25 = BMI of 20kg/m².  This is regarded as the lower end of ideal body weight and suggests the resident is underweight for optimal health.

An ideal body weight for some who is 1.5m tall would be a BMI range of 22 – 27 so a weight range of min 50kg up to around 60kg.  Basically to work out ideal body weight just enter different weights into the BMI calculation until you get to the BMI of at least 22 and then again to a BMI of around 27.

The ideal body weight may differ to the GOAL weight.  The goal weight may be something that is set when the BMI is outside the ideal range but some weight changes are desirable.  The goal weight is more useful and practical as it considers the weight history of the resident and the ability to achieve changes in weight.  For example, a resident may be underweight with a weight of 42kg (BMI= 18.6) but they have been this weight for the past year.  Ideally they would gain weight to 50kg, but this is unrealistic.  The goal weight therefore becomes either weight stabilisation at 42kg or a slight weight gain to 44kg.  This would still mean the resident is underweight but is realistic in what can be achieved.  If the initial goal weight is achieved, a second goal weight may be identified.  This may be to stabilise weight at 44kg or to gain to 45kg.  etc…

This can work for overweight residents too.  Using the same example height of 1.5m.  Someone who weighs 78kg has a BMI of 34.6, and is obese.  However, realistic weight loss to within the ideal body weight range would suggest the resident would need to lose around 18 – 28kg, which is completely unrealistic and would never be suggested for aged care.  A more realistic GOAL weight would be weight stabilisation and then some weight loss.  5% weight loss can improve many health outcomes and this would be a realistic target.  Weight loss of 5% is still around 4kg, which is possible but still difficult.

Article contributed by: Liz Beaglehole (NZ Registered Dietitian), Canterbury Dietitians

Is the company email the employers property?

In simple terms, a work or company email is an employer’s property in the same way a direct dial phone number, phone (mobile and/or land line) and any other piece of equipment or resource is.  Therefore, as a matter of principle, the employer is entitled to have access to that email address as necessary in order to conduct its business activities.  Correspondingly, employees are obliged to co-operate with any request for access.

Where issues can arise is when an employee is allowed to use their work email for personal emails.  This can either be set out in policy or implicit.  In this case, care needs to be taken to ensure that personal emails are not read.  The access should be limited to ensuring the employer can access business related emails.

If an employee is objecting to providing access to their work email, you can address this by confirming that as a matter or principle the work email address is the employer’s property and you require access to all work emails.  Reinforce with the employee, you will not be reviewing personal emails and they can either forward those emails to their personal email address, delete them etc (as noted below).  However, you will require their password and access as needed.

If an employee continues to resist, inform them you will be making arrangements with your IT service provider to gain access to the work email and given their lack of co-operation, suspending their personal use until further notice.  If this step is required, it’s advisable to contact your employment law adviser first in order to ensure clear and succinct written communications are provided in respect of this step.

To avoid issues in the future, if there is no policy in place, or if there is a policy in place which does not address it, in the first instance all employees should be told that:

(a)       Any work assigned email address is for work purposes;

(b)       That where necessary you will require employees to provide access in order for you to ensure that email communications are dealt with as needed and to provide for business continuity;

(c)       Personal emails received at the work email address can be forwarded to a personal email address, deleted, flagged or moved into a separate folder so they remain private; and

(d)       A policy will be introduced to clarify email and internet access shortly, or recirculate the current policy (updated if/as needed).

Noting point (d), if there is no policy in place, it would also be timely to introduce an email and internet policy specifying how the internet and email facilities can and will be used.  Alternatively, if there is a policy, but it does not cover this situation, the policy should be updated.

Above article kindly contributed by: Dean Kilpatrick (Special Counsel – Employment), Anthony Harper Law,  For more information contact –  Email

Influenza season

Prepared for winter coughs and colds?

Winter is fast approaching and now is the time to be preparing your facility for the season’s usual crop of influenza, coughs and colds.

Last year the elderly were hit hard with, not just influenza, but also other respiratory viral infections. Many were admitted to hospital with complications such as pneumonia.

The predominant circulating influenza strain in 2016 was Influenza A, H3N2, different from the previous year’s Influenza A, H1N1. Although covered by the vaccine, last year’s predominant strain changed slightly from what was covered in the vaccine and there were numerous reports of laboratory confirmed cases of young vaccinated adults who still acquired influenza. Despite this, vaccination still affords some protection and symptoms are less severe than without it. This is the same for the elderly whose uptake of the influenza vaccine is not so good – experts agree that there are still benefits from the elderly having an annual influenza vaccine.

Some of the other respiratory viruses last year that caused severe disease in our elderly included coronavirus, rhinovirus and parainfluenza.

 

Check list for winter virus planning

  • Encourage and offer seasonal influenza vaccination to both staff and residents
  • Ensure hand sanitiser is available for visitors at the entrance of the home
  • Consider displaying a poster discouraging visitors with symptoms – a poster is available from CDHB communications
  • Remind staff and residents about good cough etiquette / respiratory hygiene
  • Have a good stock of tissues and hand sanitiser for residents
  • Remind staff to stay off work if sick – no-one wants their germs!
  • Educate staff about S&S of influenza – not all residents will display fever or cough
  • Keep residents in their rooms if symptomatic and introduce droplet precautions, i.e. droplet masks for staff providing cares
  • If you suspect an outbreak then confirm the outbreak[1] and introduce control measures[2]

Ensure all infections are logged into you infection register (for HCSL QA online uses – this is part of your infection log process) – remember your outbreak notification requirements as per your policies and procedures.  If you would like more assistance with this please contact us.

 

This article kindly contributed by: Ruth Barratt RN, BSc, MAdvPrac (Hons) – Independent Infection Prevention & Control Advisor (Canterbury)

Infectprevent@gmail.com

[1]  Infection Prevention & Control Guidelines for the management of a respiratory outbreak in ARC / LTCF

[2] A Practical Guide to assist in the Prevention and Management of Influenza Outbreaks in Residential Care Facilities in Australia

Audit Tips – Common findings in audits

Audits in the aged residential care sector in New Zealand are assessed against their ability to comply with a raft of legislation, standards and contractual requirements.

Below are common findings which continue to be reported on during audits:

 

Criteria

Gaps in meeting full compliance

Consumer Rights

– 1.1

·         Complaints management processes not completed as per                   requirements. Eg; not being logged on the complaints                         register, time-frames not being met, lack of evidence of                     resolution.

Organisational Management

– 1.2

·         Not completing internal audits

·         Not evidencing completion of regular meetings

·         Corrective action plans not being developed or completed

·         Lack evidence of investigation

·         Lack evidence of family notifications of adverse events

·         Lack evidence of reference checks at time of employing new             staff

·         Lack of 1st Aid certified staff member on each duty in each                 work area – this must consider the size, and layout of your                   building.

·         No signed employment agreement or job description

·         Lack evidence of timely completion of orientation

·         Annual appraisals not completed for all staff

Service Delivery

– 1.3

·         Lack of timely clinical assessment

·         Lack of assessment and care-planning related to behaviours               of concern (challenging behaviours)

·         Lack of evidence in progress notes of Registered Nurse input

·         Lack of evidence in progress notes of interventions from long             term care plan

·         Lack of evidence of family / residents input

·         Lack of evidence of outcomes from clinical assessments                     (including InterRai) being used to inform the care plan

·         Transcribing of medications in care plans

·         Doctor’s instructions in medical notes not followed /                             implemented

·         Wound assessment chart not updated as per wound care plan

·         Neurological observations not completed following falls                      where there was a possibility of the resident having sustained             a head injury

·         GP reviews not recorded at time-frames determined in ARRC

·         Lack of evidence of RN acting on caregivers reporting of                     adverse health symptoms in progress notes.

Safe and Appropriate Environment

– 1.4

·         Lack of evidence of medical calibration of equipment

·         Hoists not checked and verified as fit for use.

·         Surfaces unable to be cleaned adequately

·         Non labelled or decanted chemicals

·         Lack of evidence of hot water temperatures not exceeding 45            degrees

 

Restraint minimisation and safe practice – 2.0

·         No evidence of enabler monitoring

·         Lack of evidence of incomplete restraint register.

Infection prevention and control

– 3.0

·         Infection control nurse in care facilities who have not                           completed training in infection prevention and control and                  therefore cannot demonstrate relevant knowledge on which              to base practice and monitor staff performance.

·         Not all infections are noted on the infection register. Your                    policy and procedure should include the internationally                      recognised definitions for infections on which to base your                  monitoring.  For those of you using the HCSL policies and                   procedures, these definitions are noted within the Anti-                     microbial  Policy – document code IC1.

 

 

Ensure your internal audits review the above common errors to verify you are providing safe and appropriate services in all aspects of your service.

For more assistance with this contact us.