Future of aged care under the microscope

20 June 2013

A symposium addressing one of the health challenges we face as an ageing population will be hosted by Sydney Nursing School on Friday 21 June.

The symposium, made possible by an International Program Development Fund grant to Associate Professor Yun-Hee Jeon, will cap off a successful Research Week hosted by Sydney Nursing School which features international keynote speaker Professor Myrra Vernooij-Dassen from Radboud University in the Netherlands.

"An estimated 35.6 million people with dementia exist worldwide, with the global costs of dementia estimated at US$604 billion in 2010.

"Like many developed countries, Australia is facing a number of health care policy challenges relating to an increasing prevalence of dementia and other chronic diseases. Consequently there is a growing need for formal care/support services and workforce providing quality care for people with dementia," Associate Professor Jeon said.

"There are few quality dementia care services and an appropriately trained and skilled workforce is severely lacking. There is also an enormous knowledge gap in ways to benchmark quality dementia care in particular in the community care sector.

"The Australian government's aged care reform package, Living Longer Living Better, provides directions to improve care quality, enhance regulatory systems and foster evidence-based care.

"Our aged care symposium will give us the opportunity to begin a dialogue about these government directions. As key stakeholders, we can start to examine policies, practices and research that will inform the reform process."

The symposium is supported by the University of Sydney as part of the International Program Development Fund for Building an international, interdisciplinary research program for quality indicators in dementia care project led by Associate Professor Yun-Hee Jeon, Sydney Nursing School, the University of Sydney.

The outcome of the project will be to establish an international, interdisciplinary consortium to lead and develop standards and quality indicators guiding best practices for dementia care, including desired client outcomes. The project builds on the work of Professor Vernooij-Dassen and her team, on quality indicators to improve psychosocial dementia care through "European Collaboration on Dementia".

Symposium keynote addresses:

  • Meeting the challenge of quality dementia care in Australia by Professor Henry Brodaty AO, Scientia Professor of Ageing and Mental Health, Director of the Primary Dementia Collaborative Research Centre, UNSW
  • A view from Europe: European Research Group Interdem and the improvement of the quality of dementia care and research by Professor Myrra Vernooij-Dassen, Radboud University, the Netherlands

Other speakers include:

  • Dr Stephen Judd, Chief Executive, Hammond Care
  • Ian Yates AM, Chief Executive, COTA Australia
  • Associate Professor Yun-Hee Jeon, Sydney Nursing School
  • Dr Melinda Martin-Khan, Research Fellow, Centre for Research in Geriatric Medicine, University of Queensland
  • Dr Lisa Pont, Senior Lecturer, Sydney Nursing School
  • Former Carer, Ms Joan Jackson
  • Dr Chris Hatherly, Research Manager, Alzheimer's Australia
  • Dr Lee-Fay Low, Senior Research Fellow, UNSW Primary Dementia Collaborative Research Centre

Research Week is being hosted this week by Sydney Nursing School. An annual event, Research Week brings together higher research degree nursing and midwifery students with academic staff at the faculty to foster a strong research community.

Event details

What: Aged care reform: advancing quality in dementia care symposium

When: 9am to 4pm, Friday 21 June

Where: Sydney Nursing School, 88 Mallett St, Camperdown

Cost: $55 (including GST)

Contact: Evin Donohoe, Administrative Assistant, Research Support Unit, Sydney Nursing School, 02 9351 0778,

Book now online

University of Sydney students, Sydney Nursing School staff, consumers of dementia care and carers can register free of charge.

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Rachel Gleeson, 02 9351 4630, 0481 004 782,