Twelve managers of aged care facilities in South Australia’s sister-state, Shandong, flew to Adelaide as part of the China (Qingdao) Aged Care Leadership Study Tour.
The tour was co-ordinated by Australian Aged Care & Health Export Services (AACHES) and was delivered in collaboration with TAFE SA, the University of South Australia and ACH Group.
The two-week training program was the first of its kind in Australia and was a direct result of the South Australian Government’s Business and Trade Missions to Shandong in 2015 and 2016.
Chief Executive of Health Industries South Australia, Marco Baccanti, said South Australia had a “world-class” health care industry.
“The Asia-Pacific region is the fastest growing healthcare market in the world and the Chinese Government predicts it will spend US$1.3 trillion a year on healthcare by 2020,” he said.
“We’ve worked hard to offer Chinese investors access to South Australian expertise in aged care and we’re proud it is delivering real results.”
The training program included both classroom lectures and reconnaissance tours of South Australian facilities and covered important topics in the management of aged care, including caring for people with dementia, healthy living and lifestyle, and infection control.
While no formal qualifications were awarded, the material was drawn from each institution’s current health science and aged care programs, and each participant received a certificate of completion.
The high-level training program was sponsored and funded by the Qingdao Government.
University of South Australia Pro Vice Chancellor of Health Sciences, Robert Vink, said the educational institution was proud to share its considerable teaching and research expertise in aged care.
“Through this joint education program, we will not only build a close relationship with our Chinese neighbours, but also hope to make a significant positive impact on the quality of aged care in China,” he said.
South Australia continues to be recognised for its leadership in aged services, including the aged-care focussed SA Innovation Hub, to develop ideas around improving governance and quality of life for older people, such as an open-sourced ageing and caring service that uses a peer-to-peer carer support model, and the Eldercare Dementia Excellence Program that was selected as a finalist for the best Dementia Care Philosophy Award at the 5th Asia Pacific Eldercare Innovation Awards.
AACHES Chief Executive Officer, Jerome Maguire, said the organisation secured the partnership agreement with crucial help from highly regarded local institutions—such as UniSA, TAFE SA and ACH Group—and with strong support and encouragement from the South Australian Government.
“This is a great start and signals a bright future for aged care trade opportunities between China and South Australia,” he said.
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