Aged Care Residents
Most Australians are unaware that older people living in aged care have limited access to psychology services unless they have the financial resources. Medicare rebates to see psychologists are not available to people living in aged care and the industry is not funded to provide psychology services to their residents.
Change Futures has significant concerns about this situation given that the rates of depression, anxiety and suicidal thinking are higher in this group that in the general community. As a result, Change Futures offers free services two days per week to one of our partners, St Vincent’s Health and Aged Care at Mitchelton.
In all, 11 provisional psychologists and two supervisors provide services to residents and their families and to the people living in the independent living units within the grounds. These services include individual counselling, workshops and support groups.
Over time as our understanding of the issues and the needs of this vulnerable group of older Australians develops, we hope to expand this service to other organisations caring for older people.