Violence and bullying made up almost one-third of all lost time injuries in WA residential aged care facilities, according to WorkSafe WA.
Now they are doing something about it.
From next month, they will run a six-month inspection program in metropolitan and regional areas in Western Australia focusing on reducing physical and psychological injuries.
Inspectors will visit facilities to assess the systems in place to prevent cases of violence and aggression and advise on strategies to improve these rates.
Violence shouldn’t just be accepted
It’s a good idea. Violence is a serious problem in healthcare, but sadly it’s just considered to be ‘part of the job’.
Case in point: our recent story that highlighted a study that found one in two Queensland nurses experienced workplace violence in the last three months here.
Working in the sector for the last 15 years – and having gone through the process of placing our mother into residential care – I know how difficult and stressful it can be for residents and their families.
Up to 50 per cent of aged care residents are also living with dementia – which sadly can be linked to aggressive behaviour.
But these are the people caring for our parents and grandparents – and with our population only set to grow older, they need to know they can go to work and be protected.
Anything we can do to make our aged care homes safer – for everyone involved – has got to be a good thing.