Improved quality of care a virtual reality

A redevelopment of training for aged care and disability workers has utilised virtual reality technology and the experience of nursing home residents to ensure students are schooled in person-centred care.

In a year where the industry is bracing itself for a deluge of distressing submissions to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, the Future Social Service Institute (FSSI) has redesigned an entry-level qualification with a clear focus on improving the quality of care.

Nursing home residents, people with disabilities, carers and industry employers have all been involved in creating the new curriculum for the Certificate III (Individual Support).

Students don virtual reality goggles to run through scenarios that enable them to empathise with clients of aged care and disability services. The exercises enable the students to literally put themselves in the position of a client in a wheelchair or in an aged care bed, who is excluded from conversations about their own treatment or is at the receiving end of hurried, unthinking care.

Scenarios are repeated using a different point of view, so the student can take part as if they were a practitioner delivering care, a client and an onlooker.

The virtual reality delivery adds to the blended learning mix of online modules, face-to-face training and greatly increased work placement hours.

Graduates will be able to work in roles including: disability support, personal care, community access, and in-home support. It can also be a stepping stone to a career in fields such as occupational therapy or speech pathology.

FSSI, which is a collaboration between RMIT and VCOSS supported by the Victorian Government, is offering scholarships that will cover all study costs, including student services and amenities fees, plus the first aid qualifications and a police check that are a workplace requirement.

Click here for details and to apply.