How Ageing Support workers benefit from free Counselling programs.
Swinburne University’s Wellbeing Clinic for Older Adults launched a national telehealth service in June to support Aged Care residents, their families, and carers during coronavirus. The program is among a growing number of free online Counselling services providing socially distanced mental health support as lockdown measures make face-to-face Counselling difficult or impossible to access.
The announcement highlights an important issue facing Ageing Support workers: the availability (and importance) of telehealth services for hard-working carers, especially in these trying times.
What is telehealth?
Telehealth, also called eHealth or online Counselling, refers to Counsellors and Mental Health workers conducting sessions via video chat, over the phone, or text chat. When in-person appointments pose health risks or are not viable because of age, disability or distance, telehealth is an increasingly effective alternative.
Why Ageing Support workers need free online Counselling
There is no doubt that older Australians are at risk of becoming withdrawn and socially isolated as coronavirus piles stress and social separation on top of ever-present health risks. As the health care industry faces increased demand, Aged Care workers caring for these individuals are also at risk, particularly of anxiety, exhaustion, stress and depression.
Counselling in the Aged Care industry: Stats and facts to know
- Aged Care residents are 5 times more likely than independent peers to experience depression and anxiety
- More than half (52%) of aged care residents show mild, moderate or major symptoms of depression
- 68% of those with symptoms had, or were seeking, a diagnosis
- 180,000 people over 65 receive residential or round-the-clock care
- 1,200,000 people receive aged care services across Australia
- More than 250,000 people work in Aged and Disabled Care or Nursing Support in Australia
Supporting Ageing Support workers
Aged Care workers are, almost by definition, models of resilience and compassion. But they are still human. Organisations like Carers WA, beyondblue and Swinburne’s Wellbeing Clinic (among many others) work with the Government to step up services for Ageing Support as the COVID-19 pandemic puts pressure on workers.
Carer Gateway is one such resource where carers can access free online Counselling, support planning, respite care and more crucial support programs.
Ageing Support workers are increasingly noticed for their dedication, empathy and unyielding work ethic. Free online Counselling is just one way these essential workers are supported so they can continue to care for Australia’s ageing generation during coronavirus.