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  • Writer's pictureThe Communiqués

Residential Aged Care Communiqué Volume 11 Issue 2 May 2016

In this edition

  • Editorial

  • Case 1 – The Ghost of Christmas Past

  • Case 2 – Not a very Merry Christmas

  • 3 Impact of RAC Communiqué on Clinical Practice

  • A commentary in three parts: Too busy looking forward to look back

  • Part I The Grinch, Joseph Ibrahim

  • Part II Safety and public holidays, Stuart Marshall

  • Part III Coping with the psychological stress of Christmas, Kylie McKenzie

  • Working together with residents, carers and families

  • List of Resources


Welcome to the second issue of 2016. We focus on the gaps in care that arise every year, in every human service, as a result of a much anticipated occasion, the festive season. We also present the results from our subscriber survey conducted in 2014. The wheels of research and academia move slowly, we had to wait till the study was vetted and published in an academic peer review journal.

The cases in this issue highlight the everyday clinical issues that everyone faces in Residential Aged Care Services. The aspects we want you to consider are whether the care delivered in these two cases was influenced by the fact that the events occurred over the Christmas and New Year period. We think so, but this is hard to prove.

With ‘Christmas in July’ soon upon us, we thought now was the ideal time to ask the questions. Much like Charles Dickens’ character Ebenezer Scrooge, we have choices in how we live and organise our work practice. It is silly to pretend that the festive season is ‘business as usual’ and that our systems operate exactly the same.

The festive season brings profound changes in peoples’ work patterns, with responsibilities for childcare, and honouring family commitments, as well as the psychological stress so often common to these times. Regular staff are rewarded with time off, agency staff are often hard to find and expensive, the health clinics are closed, if you need a doctor it is usually a locum, and everyone wants to leave early to get somewhere, or start later to recover from the night before. Planning for the Christmas holiday period requires the same level of planning we would do for an external disaster.


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