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Cert III in aged care – Unit Advocate for Clients

Target group is aged care

  1. Specific needs and rights

The specific needs and rights of the aged include the basic needs, gainful work, health care, educational programs, as well as the right to live at home or in a setting, which provides comfortable, safe, and supportive environments. They also need to be treated fairly, to be treated with value in their own right, as well as to live in securely and in dignity in an atmosphere that protects them from exploitation, mental and physical abuse. Their right to personal autonomy or self-determination should also be respected.

  1. The process for lodging complaints on behalf of the client

A complaint can be lodged with the Ageing, Disability and Home Care (ADHC) on behalf of a client, in this case the aged. Complaints may be lodged through an email, letter, in person or over the phone. The process of lodging complaints on behalf of the client involves:

The first step entails speaking to the person who provided the service or made the decision that is in dispute to allow them a chance resolve the issue.

When the response is not satisfactory, the manager of the ADHC is contacted, so as to make an official complaint.

When the complaints have not been resolved successfully, the Complaints Unit for Housing and Community Services or Disability ACT is contacted.

When the issue still remains unresolved, the Regulation Oversight and Quality Service is contacted to allow them to liaise with the pertinent area and decide the further actions that have to be pursued.

When the complaint still remains unresolved, the complaint can still be referred to the external supervisory agencies like the Human Rights Commission, ACT Ombudsman, Privacy Commissioner, Administrative Tribunal and ACT Civil.

3. How to identify if the target group needs the services of professional advocacy organization

When there is an evidence of conflict of interest, such as when the client’s family member or a person assisting the client promotes own person interests instead of advocating for the rights of the aged persons.

When conflict exists as regards the decisions to be made, such as when a decision by a member of staff of an advocacy organisation or family is in disagreement with that of the aged person.

When there is an evidence of inappropriate pressure or influence on the client to make a decision.

Lastly, when there are signs of physical, sexual or financial abuse.

4. Options that aged clients might have to meet their needs

The first option is assisting the clients to recognize their rights, determine whether their rights have been violated, and fulfil their own needs. The second option entails advocating on behalf of clients whenever they make the requests, and in turn initiating, negotiating, as well as executive pertinent strategies that can address their needs. The third option is advocating for the clients. For instance, after an assessment shows that the client needs advocacy support, the relevant people who need to uphold their rights initiates and put strategies for addressing the needs of the clients into action.

5. How to negotiate for the aged in advocacy

Negotiation starts with figuring out the best possible alternative to resolution for the client. Afterwards, start, negotiate, and employ pertinent strategies that can address the needs of the clients. The demands should be made to the opponent with the interest of the clients at the centre of the negotiation. The negotiation should be based on client-centred approach. It should also show a non-judgmental approach towards the client. The proper documentation should be maintained throughout the process of negotiating.

6. Contacting people who might be able to help clients in the area

The people who may be able to assist the client may be contacted directly by telephone or in person once they have been directed. They may as well be contacted through written documents, such as through letters, via their website, email, as well as facsimile.

7. How to ensure that the client’s information is kept confidential

Confidentiality policies should be initiated and implemented effectively to ensure that care workers protect the information they acquire from the clients. The policies should also have the possible courses or actions when confidentiality is breached by the care workers. The service providers who are work in collaboration to help in prevailing over abusive situations need to take account of the relevant means to sharing pertinent personal information strictly for the benefit of elderly persons.

8. Keeping clients informed of progress

Presenting up to date information to the clients through phone calls, in-person, or emails can assist the clients to learn of the progress in advocating for them.

9. The steps to develop, implement and monitor advocacy strategies

The first step entails defining the issue or the problem at hand. The second stage entails setting goals and objectives, including what advocates expect to attain. Third step involves identifying the target audience. Next entails building support, such as through liaising with the civil groups, activists, or professional organisations. This is followed by drafting implementation plan to identify the tasks and appropriate resources and time fame. Next stage entails monitoring, tracking, and evaluating the progress against the objectives.

10. Conflicts of interest an advocate may face

Conflicts of interest may materialise when they refuse to advocate for clients because of their differing cultural background, gender, sexuality, or beliefs. When the advocates discuss the client’s information with a different agency for purposes of advancing their careers as well as without the permission of the clients, and lastly, when they respect their own views rather than that of the patients.