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The state of physical environments in Australian residential aged care facilities


Moore, KJ and Hill, KD and Robinson, AL and Haines, TP and Haralambous, B and Nitz, JC, The state of physical environments in Australian residential aged care facilities, Australian Health Review, 35, (4) pp. 412-417. ISSN 0156-5788 (2011) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

Copyright 2011 CSIRO

DOI: doi:10.1071/AH10932


Objective. This paper examines the quality and safety of the physical environment in Australian residential aged care facilities (RACFs).

Design. Cross-sectional study. One assessor completed environmental audits to identify areas of the physical environment that needed to be addressed to improve the wellbeing and safety of residents.

Setting. Nine RACFs participating in a broader falls prevention project were audited. RACFs were located in Queensland, Tasmania or Victoria and were chosen by convenience to represent high level, low level, dementia and psychogeriatric care, regional and metropolitan facilities, small and large facilities and a culturally specific facility.

Main outcome measure. An environmental audit tool was adapted from a tool designed to foster older person friendly hospital environments. The tool consisted of 147 items.

Results. Across all sites 450 items (34%) required action. This ranged from 21 to 44% across sites. The audit domains most commonly requiring action included signage, visual perception and lighting, and outdoor areas.

Conclusions. Although not representative of all residential facilities in Australia, this audit process has identified common environmental problems across a diverse mix of residential care facilities. Results highlight the need for further investigation into the quality of physical environments, and interventions to improve physical environments in Australian RACFs.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:physical environment in Australian residential aged care facilities
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Health services and systems
Research Field:Health care administration
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Evaluation of health and support services
Objective Field:Evaluation of health outcomes
UTAS Author:Robinson, AL (Professor Andrew Robinson)
ID Code:75791
Year Published:2011
Web of Science® Times Cited:8
Deposited By:Health Sciences B
Deposited On:2012-02-16
Last Modified:2017-11-06

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