Kew Gardens

Streamlining the Quality Reporting Program

Dear Stakeholders Thank you for your cooperation regarding the streamlining of the Quality Reporting Program. The final stages of the process were introduced on 1 January 2014 and are outlined in this communique. The changes affect the quality reviews of all service outlets providing Australian Government subsidised aged care in the home. The streamlined approach is aimed at providing efficiencies in the quality review process, whilst maintaining a focus on the provision of quality care, particularly for those service providers that deliver both home and residential care across multiple outlets and service types. Streamlining of the Quality Reporting Program resulted in a number of changes. Initial changes to the processes included the removal of the requirement to submit a self-assessment prior to the quality review site visit, the removal of the Annual Improvement Plan and the closure of the service provider portal. An outline of the remaining changes to the quality review processes follows. Streamlined Quality Reporting Program processes
  1. Service Type reviews Quality reviews involve an assessment of the policies, systems and procedures that a service provider has in place at each of its outlets to ensure it is providing care and services in accordance with the Horne Care Standards (the Standards) across all the service types delivered. Service providers need to demonstrate that they have rigorous systems and processes in place which meet the Standards across all service types, regardless of the type of care being delivered. The quality of care should be consistent across all service types.For large service providers, Standard 1 is reviewed in detail at the first service outlet. The service provider is required to give the quality review team evidence demonstrating that each expected outcome has been met. The results from the first service outlet are then tested at subsequent outlets.Standards 2 and 3 are thoroughly reviewed at all service outlets. Assessment of the evidence provided by the service outlets focuses on confirming the delivery of quality outcomes for care recipients. This is supported by interviews with staff and care recipients and/or their families.Adopting this approach means that if the evidence is satisfactory, and systems and processes are in place at the first service outlet, it will be evidenced at any additional outlets. This allows for a risk-based approach to quality monitoring.
  2. Interim and Final Quality Review Report A number of changes have been made to the Quality Review Report (QRR) throughout the streamlining process.
    • The QRR now contains a Met or Not Met finding for each expected outcome, accompanied by a Statement of Reasons for the finding, supported by evidence. The Statement of Reasons aims to clearly establish the findings, reference material on which the findings were based and the reason for the decision.
    • An interim QRR gives service outlets an opportunity to see the preliminary findings of the quality review. It details the findings within a Statement of Reasons. On receiving the interim QRR, service providers have 14 calendar days to submit evidence, or reference existing evidence that may support the reconsideration of a Not Met finding.
    • Service providers that receive one or more Not Met findings are placed on a Timetable
    • For Improvement (TFI). The TFI provides a time frame for action, generally 12 weeks. These service providers are required to update their Plan for Continuous Improvement (PCI) with activities to be undertaken to rectify Not Met expected outcomes. The service provider has 14 calendar days to identify appropriate actions. When the actions are approved, the 12-week period starts.
  3. Outcome Score The outcome score (ie. Outcome 1, 2 or 3), which reflected the level of compliance with the Standards, has been removed from the QRR. The findings of a review now reflect the Met or Not Met outcomes supported by evidence, rather than an overall outcome score.
  4. Plan for Continuous Improvement Service providers are no longer required to submit an Annual Improvement Plan. Instead, service provides will continue to develop and maintain their PCI throughout the three-year review cycle to demonstrate compliance with the Standards. The Department may request a service provider’s PCI at any time during the review cycle.The PCI will need to be updated to include strategies and treatments to rectify any Not Met expected outcomes that may be identified in the Final QRR.
Thank you for your ongoing commitment to the Quality Reporting Program. Yours sincerely, Susanne Lander A/g Assistant Secretary Quality and Monitoring Branch Office of Aged Care Quality and Compliance January 2014