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Consumer Directed Care in Residential Aged care: Implementation and Evaluation of the resident at the centre of care (RCC) Program

, Prof Daniel O'Connor, Prof Elizabeth Beattie, A/Prof Belinda Goodenough
Research Centre DCRC Carers and Consumers
Partner Institution
Project Description

Our Resident at the Centre of Care (RCC) Program will lead to a revolutionary change to the nature of care in residential aged care facilities (RACFs). It will involve training staff in Consumer Directed Care (CDC), how to implement and monitor resident needs and manage the major changes in leadership, organisational procedures and organisational climates. The relationship between staff and residents will also play a key role in resident outcomes and satisfaction with care. This relationship, also known as Working Alliance, will also form a part of the training approach. An economic evaluation will be conducted to determine the cost-effectiveness of the RCC program plus organisational support compared to both RCC program only and a ‘care as usual’ condition. Specific aims of the project are to:

  • Evaluate the effectiveness of our Resident at the Centre of Care (RCC) Program among people with dementia in RACFs.
  • Determine the effectiveness of the program for resident, staff and workplace variables.
  • Conduct an economic evaluation of the RCC program.
  • Translate the findings from the evaluation into practice change with our industry partners.
  • Inform relevant State and Federal Government departments of our findings in order to shape their policies in relation to CDC in RACFs.

We will employ and evaluate a six-session training program (the RCC Program) directed at managers and staff using a cluster-randomized controlled trial (RCT) design. We will recruit 120 residents with dementia (20 residents per facility) and 120 staff (60 senior staff and 60 PCAs) from 6 facilities. These facilities will be randomly allocated into three conditions:

  • Condition 1 – Implementation of the RCC Program among managers, RNs and senior Personal Care Attendants (PACs).

  • Condition 2 – Implementation of the RCC Program plus organisational support for one day per week for four weeks following Session 2 of the program and one day per week for 12 weeks following Session 6. The support person will liaise with staff to support their engagement with CDC.

  • Condition 3 – a ‘care as usual’ control group.

  • It is expected that the RCC program, particularly the RCC program with organisational support, will be superior compared to a ‘care as usual’ condition in improving:

  • Quality of life of residents (primary outcome)

  • Workplace factors such as transformational leadership, organisational climate (such as enhancing staff autonomy and recognition, fostering trusting, cohesive and supportive staff relations, encouraging innovative workplace practices, and reducing workplace pressures) and the relationship between staff and residents

  • Staff factors such as stress, self-efficacy, job satisfaction, and turnover

It is expected that supplementing the transformational training program with professional organisational support will lead to greater benefits than the same program without organisational support. If successful, the RCC program will be adopted as routine practice in our partner organizations. It will be manualized and so available for a broader roll out in RACFs across Australia. 


Successful DCRC grant recipient 2016

Other team members:

Dr Gery Karantzas, Deakin University 
Prof Daniel O'Connor, Australian Catholic University
Prof Kerrie Sanders, Australian Catholic University
Dr Lucy Busija, Australian Catholic University
Prof David Mellor, Deakin University
Ms Kristen Holdsworth, Australian Catholic University
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