High quality service key to success in aged care beyond 2017

Aged care services that have no point of difference, do not offer high quality services or compete on price will fail in an increasingly competitive marketplace beyond 2017, according to HammondCare Chief Executive, Dr Stephen Judd.

Speaking at the ACSA 2016 National Summit in Hobart today on winners and losers in aged care beyond 2017, Dr Judd said older people most likely to struggle in a competitive market were those with uncommon needs and people living in rural areas.

“It is imperative that not-for-profit providers lead the way here, seeking out and creatively supporting those people who would otherwise fall through the cracks,” Dr Judd said.

More businesslike

He said charities operating in aged care in Australia would need to be more businesslike in their operations to survive beyond 2017.

“The not for profits who will succeed and flourish beyond 2017 are those that will provide a competitive advantage in quality, providing a differentiated product or on price."

Dr Judd said quality among aged care providers was not uniform and those that provide a high quality service would flourish in a competitive market.

“The simple message to all aged care providers today is that clinical excellence is an essential part of providing a quality aged care service and if you can’t provide that, you will flounder.”

Exceeding client expectations

Meeting and exceeding client expectations would also be key to providing a quality service: “Consumer research in aged care shows that people are looking for strong values and relationships of trust when choosing aged care. In a competitive market, people want providers who are willing to stand up for them and their rights.”

Dr Judd said good charities have an advantage when it comes to meeting and exceeding people’s expectations: “Quality should be in our organisational DNA.”

He said the current aged care system of one size fits all in Australia had resulted in “exhausted mediocrity” and providers who did not differentiate in the future, would flounder.

“Providers that are able to offer a specialised service will stand out. The providers that will flourish are those that will focus their service to meet a particular set of needs or serve a particular group of people in a focused and unique way."