A study conducted y the University of Melbourne found that aged care workers in the Australian state of Victoria are “more stressed and fatigued, make more mistakes with medication, and have less job satisfaction than two years ago.”   The study was based on a survey conducted this year of more than 500 registered nurses and personal care workers in Victoria who had also completed a similar survey in 2007.

According to the study, the “primary motivation for working in aged care is the belief that the elderly should be properly cared for.”  However, around 20% of nurses in the aged care industry chose to leave because “their ability to provide high quality care for aged care residents was increasingly being constrained because of a lack of qualified staff, cost cutting and poor human resource management practices.” The study’s authors argue that “[t]he findings indicate that workers in facilities with well-developed human resource management practices and adequate staffing levels report more positive attitudes towards their work and better physical and mental health outcomes. Individuals from these facilities also report that they are able to provide a higher quality of care for their residents.”  They go on to recommend recommends increasing ratios of registered nurses to residents, and improving management practices.

For more information:

University of Melbourne

The Sydney Morning Herald