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Get compassionate care in the right place, at the right time

IRT’s Journey of Care is a model of care that personalises the care experience for every resident. We recognise that every care journey is unique and honour the individual diversity of each resident.

Currently available at selected IRT aged care centres, the IRT Journey of Care incorporates two key elements:

 

Neighbourhoods

 

Specialist Programs

Neighbourhoods

Neighbourhoods cater for residents with similar care needs, allowing for staff specialisation, and tailored design of the physical environment and equipment that’s underpinned by research. IRT’s aged care centre neighbourhoods allow families to see their loved one ageing in the right place with the right care needs.

There are three IRT aged care centre neighbourhoods:

 

Vitality neighbourhood

 

Discovery neighbourhood

 

Serenity neighbourhood

Decals provide recognisable locations for residents of the IRT Woonona dementia wing

Vitality neighbourhood

This neighbourhood focuses on resident vitality and creating an environment where people come to live, not just receive care. Personalised care plans are developed in partnership with each resident, ensuring our ability to meet needs, wishes and requirements. Our holistic approach ensures that medical, physiological, emotional, social and relationship needs are catered for. This neighbourhood suits residents who are mentally and physically active or require minimal assistance to move around their environment or prompting to aid cognition.

Discovery neighbourhood

This neighbourhood focuses on discovering resident abilities, enabling them to live with dementia with independence, individuality and dignity. Residents’ lives are enhanced through best practice design of the built environment, underpinned by Dementia Training Australia’s dementia design principles. These principles help minimise confusion and uncertainty, which reduces agitation and exit seeking while increasing independence and engagement with the community.

In this neighbourhood you might see dementia design principles being used to:

  • Unobtrusively reduce risk: disguise fences or locked doors (with things such as murals or plants) to avoid frustration, agitation, anger or depression
  • Allow people to see and be seen: provide cues in the environment through signs, colour and landmarks to help residents recognise where they are
  • Manage levels of stimulation: highlight helpful stimulation through the use of sight and sound to provide sensory cues. Reduce the stimuli that is not relevant to residents (e.g. disguise staff meeting rooms, storage cupboards etc)
  • Support movement and engagement: provide clear pathways with points of activity both inside and outside
  • Create a familiar space: use furniture, fittings and colours that are familiar to residents from their early life
  • Provide a variety of places to be alone or with others: create opportunities for residents to be alone or with others through spaces such as small sitting nooks and pergolas in gardens.

This neighbourhood suits residents living with dementia who are mobile and active or require minimal assistance to move around their environment.

Serenity neighbourhood

This neighbourhood focuses on compassionate care for residents’ physical needs, while also nurturing their spirit. Residents are treated with dignity and respect as they approach end of life.

Our palliative care experience promotes comfort, care and a holistic understanding of wellbeing. We support our residents and their families through this time, and offer a range of signature recognition programs where residents are honoured in life, and in passing. Options include:

  • Portable refreshment units for families visiting a loved one at end of life
  • Purple flower room signage to signify the imminent passing of a loved one, and butterfly room signage symbolising their passing
  • A Guard of Honour to farewell residents as they leave the aged care centre (if the family wishes)
  • A memorial book to celebrate the memory of the resident.

The serenity neighbourhood suits residents with limited to no mobility and a life limiting illness or advancing dementia.

IRT carer smiling with elderly woman in retirement village

Specialist Programs

Our specialist programs support resident wellbeing in each neighbourhood, and at each stage of the care journey. By working in partnership with leading Australian researchers and health experts, we enrich residents’ quality of life, when they need it most. The IRT aged care centre specialist programs are:

 

Montessori

 

Namaste

Montessori

Our Montessori approach to people living with dementia provides an environment that supports residents to achieve greater independence, higher self-esteem and a sense of wellbeing. Montessori principles support people living with dementia to continue to make valuable contributions
to their community and engage in meaningful activities. Montessori also encourages family members and friends to participate in the activities so they can feel a sense of connection to their loved one living with dementia.

With a primary focus on engagement, trained employees use the 12 Principles of Montessori to work with residents and their families to tailor Montessori activities and resident roles based on sensory, motor, social and cognitive skills.

  • Montessori activities and resident roles
    Montessori activities generally include something the resident can hold, visual cues they can follow and activities based on demonstration. This may include matching and sorting and hand-eye coordination activities, such as setting the table, folding washing, sorting pegs by colour and opening and closing padlocks. Montessori resident roles may include updating the orientation board daily, watering plants or sweeping leaves.
    Montessori activities and resident roles enable residents living with dementia to develop connections and a sense of purpose and value in their community.


Namaste 

Namaste, a Hindu term for honouring the spirit within, incorporates sensory-based care with meaningful activities to achieve comfort and quality of life. IRT has adopted its Namaste program as a core pillar in supporting residents who can no longer participate in traditional activities or are facing end-stage dementia.

Trained staff integrate sensory stimulation into care delivery using therapeutic touch, aromatherapy, music and sensory experiences. Activities are tailored for each resident and generally include special momentos from their life. Family and friends are encouraged to participate, as Namaste often enables a sense of connection at a time when communication with loved ones is limited.

Founded on the power of loving touch, some of the benefits of our Namaste program include; a relaxed and fulfilling environment, reduced need for medication, decreased pain, fewer incidents of aggression, increased social interaction, a holistic approach that includes physical and emotional health and a positive impact on quality of life. Core services include:

  • Sensory stimulation
    IRT’s Namaste care experience incorporates stimulation of the five senses (touch, hearing, sight, smell, taste). Music, colour, therapeutic touch and massage, aromatherapy oils and food treats are all part of the multi-sensory environment created in Namaste.
  • Meaningful activity
    Activities are tailored for each resident to create opportunities for loving touch and human connection. Hands and face may be gently washed with a warm flannel, patted dry with a soft towel and moisturising cream applied. Staff use opportunities like this to make eye contact with residents and speak to them with warmth and kindness.
  • Life story and family participation
    Family and friends are invited to join in the Namaste care experience and share stories from their loved one’s past. We often create a personalised box of special mementos to incorporate into the care experience. Residents are encouraged to hold these items and may be immersed in familiar sounds and smells to promote comfort and wellbeing.
  • Group sessions
    Namaste session are delivered by specially-trained staff in small groups or one-on-one in a calm space away from distractions and daily activities. Small groups are run in dedicated Namaste rooms featuring soft lighting and engaging design elements supported by music, aromatherapy and
    temperature control.
  • Pain management, warmth and hydration
    Specially-trained staff ensure that residents are comfortable and well hydrated throughout the session. Blankets and socks keep residents warm and cosy in between activities, like foot massages. This helps residents to relax into the sensory-care experience.

IRT’s Journey of Care, supporting residents and families at each stage of their aged care journey

Residents

IRT’s Journey of Care supports residents to nurture their spirit and wellbeing at each stage of their care journey. Residents feel valued and understood. They live with residents with similar care needs in a purpose-designed environment, receive compassionate care from trained staff, and experience specialised programs grounded in the latest research. With the IRT Journey of Care, residents are respected and honoured, in life and in death.

Families

Families have peace of mind and confidence in the quality of care and safety of their loved ones as they journey through our aged care centres. They’re enabled and empowered to participate in the care of their loved one. Through the IRT Journey of Care, families know their loved one will age in the right place with the right care. They’ll experience specialist programs, the right equipment and a built environment that supports their unique needs.

Frequently asked questions

Does it cost more to participate in IRT’s Journey of Care?

The Journey of Care model is a unique approach to delivering residential aged care. In most cases it won’t affect the cost of a resident’s accommodation and care.

Is the Journey of Care model available at every IRT aged care centre?

IRT is working to enable all residents to experience the benefits of our Journey of Care. The model is currently available at selected IRT aged care centres. Talk to your Care Manager to find out what is available to you.

If my loved one needs to move from their existing room to a new neighbourhood, who does the move?

The move will be coordinated with the family with assistance provided by staff/removalists where necessary.

Do residents need to move if they wish to stay where they are?

No. Residents do not have to move if they are unwilling or if their family does not want to undertake the move. Moving to a Journey of Care neighbourhood is voluntary for existing residents.

How do I know if/when my loved one will need to move?

A member of staff that you are familiar with will contact you and discuss the needs of your loved one and the possible transition to an alternate Journey of Care neighbourhood and what this may mean.

Will it cost more money to move to a Journey of Care neighbourhood?

No. If the resident needs to move to a Journey of Care neighbourhood then the existing pricing paid on admission stays in place and there are no moving costs.

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