From strength to strength: provider’s aged care gyms flourish

June 10, 2016

An aged care provider’s success with a series of fitness and wellness centres co-located at its residential facilities has been recognised with an innovation in service award.

Southern Cross Care (SA & NT), which has established the Health & Wellness Centres at six of its aged care facilities, said that 90 per cent of residents attending reported their quality of life had improved while 86 per cent reported feeling stronger.

Now the provider’s initiative has been recognised with an innovation in service award by Aged and Community Services (ACS) SA & NT.

Southern Cross Care (SA & NT) is one of three leading aged care providers who will share their experiences of embedding a wellness and reablement approach at the upcoming Active Ageing Conference 2016. Read AAA’s previous story on their organisation-wide approachhere.

Andrew Larpent, Southern Cross Care CEO, said initial results from the centres had been nothing short of outstanding. “Demand from residents has far surpassed our expectations. Once residents see the positive impact of the recovery and exercise programs on their physical and mental health, they really become engaged with the process,” he said.

The provider said it now expected to open a further nine centres in the next year.

The centres were coordinated by qualified fitness coordinators with the aim of improving and regaining residents’ strength and fitness.

The focus to improve quality of life for residents was through healthy ageing interventions that supported their physical health, social relationships, psychological and spiritual wellbeing, environment and possibilities for empowerment, the provider said.

Barbara Gutte, one of the fitness instructors involved in staffing the centres, said that residents’ self-esteem and self-worth was being built, and friendships formed.

“Residents have changed. Yes, they have become stronger, but more importantly for me is they are happier. And this is where I see the beauty of the centres, this is the holistic aspect,” sais Ms Gutte.

The provider also reported that it was increasingly attracting students from diploma of fitness, human movement and postgraduate clinical exercise physiology who wanted to complete their student placement work at the centres.



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