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  • Writer's pictureThe Communiqués

Residential Aged Care Communiqué Volume 11 Issue 4 November 2016

In this edition

  • Editorial

  • Commentary 1 – Jane Herington: Congratulations on the 10-year anniversary

  • Readers’ Comments

  • Commentary 2 – David Ranson: A decade in forensic pathology

  • Commentary 3 – Terrona Ramsay: Ten years in aged care

  • List of Contributors: Case Précis

  • List of Managing Editors and Designers

  • Commentary 4 – Sue Evans: Patient safety from 2006 to 2016

  • List of Contributors: Expert Commentators

  • Commentary 5 – Rhona Nay: The good, the bad and the downright ugly

  • Case from past I – A question of rights and risks

  • Case from past II – A policy for procedures and practices relating to restraint

  • Commentary from the past – General Practice, Residential and Acute Care

  • List of RAC Communiqué Issues


Welcome to our 40th issue as we celebrate our 10 year anniversary. Over those 3653 days we have had many nervous and exciting moments. The support and generosity from the Ageing and Aged Care Branch of the Department of Health and Human Services (Victoria) has been amazing and without them we would not exist. The support of our subscribers and readers keeps us going to seek new ways of conveying information to improve the lives of patients, residents, family, friends and strangers. The movie ‘Happy Feet’ was a huge success in 2006 and in comparison our entry into the media was very low key.

Like ‘Mumble’ we wanted to do something out of the ordinary, to follow our heart to help the people at the point of care deliver the standard of care they would want for their loved ones. With two left feet we danced awkwardly, rather than sashaying, through the various obstacles. The wise counsel of friends and colleagues allowed us to overcome each obstacle to continue the production of the Residential Aged Care Communiqué (RAC Communiqué).

It is important to acknowledge that it is only through the support of the Coroners Courts throughout Australia and Ontario Canada that we were able to bring you the case reports. The RAC Communiqué has had four formal evaluations published in academic journals. Over half of our subscribers (55.6%) reported changing their practice because of the information in this publication. Another measure of the worth of the RAC Communiqué is that we are registered at the National Library of Australia as being of national significance.

This is a ‘bumper issue’, almost two issues in one. We are extremely fortunate to have reflections and commentaries from experts in their field. You may not agree with all they have written but it is well worth your time to look at each commentary and discuss with staff and colleagues.

Rhonda Nay and Terrona Ramsay look back on the changes in aged care, Sue Evans guides us through the changes that have occurred in health care which continue to influence practice in aged care, and finally David Ranson explains changes in the forensic investigation processes.

Furthermore we have also gone through the archives to include three contributions that emphasise the reasons the RAC Communiqué exists and needs to continue. We have picked cases which cover topics commonly in play in aged care.

First we revisit a case from the first issue covering the use of physical restraints with the hope that it reminds us of the need to promote a restraint free environment.

Our second case demonstrates the complexity of care and how we address risks associated with respecting a resident’s choice.

Finally, we revisit a commentary highlighting the importance of good communication between general practice, residential aged care services and acute care hospitals.

I extend our thanks to the key people who contributed as authors of a case précis or as experts or behind the scenes. They are listed in this issue, my sincere apologies if I have overlooked anyone.

Rhonda Nay and Maree Cameron deserve special acknowledgement for keeping me on track over the last 10 years.

Why 3653 days? We had three leap years.


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