Village Voice: January 2019

As we say goodbye to 2018 and welcome 2019, I would like to make a couple of comments about the year that has just gone.

Firstly, the good. We purchased a new village at Rosebud and, whilst it needs some work to bring it up to scratch, there is a real positive vibe down there you can ‘feel’ each time you visit the Village. We have a really great group of residents who are very positive on the future and terrific team of staff (all six of them) who enjoy the role they play in meeting the needs of our residents.

We completed more units at Baxter and bulldozed others as we continue to redevelop our Village and no matter how many new units we build, our waiting list just seems to get longer, so our potential customers must like what they see with our Village.

We successfully achieved the maximum accreditation for both the Manor and Lodge and this was the first time we were subjected to the new ‘un-announced’ accreditation process. Whilst it created havoc to the plans we had for the three days the team was on site, our processes were strong enough to simply change gears to meet the needs of the assessors. That was a great effort by our team.

Probably my best highlight for the year was having Christmas dinner with some families in the Manor. It was impromptu as there was simply a vacant seat at one of the tables and I asked the families if I could join them for lunch. As we were talking, both family members related what life was like for their parent in the years prior to relocating in the Manor. Due to declining health life in the unit had become a struggle and it was simply a reality to withdraw from a lot of social interactions they had enjoyed in the Village. For one of them, it was often easier to simply stay in bed. When they were able to talk about the positive benefits both had experienced through relocating to the Manor, and the re-engagement with people and the happiness both the family members and our residents had experienced during this time, it reminds you of what a special place we have and what a great team of staff we have to create such an environment.

This sentiment was also expressed to me at the Day Centre Christmas lunch when a family member took me aside to say that her husband looks forward every week to his time attending the Day Centre and the enjoyment and happiness that he achieves from the interaction with our clients and staff is a joy to the family .This is what we try and deliver every day to every person and it touched my heart to listen to the stories of our achievements. One of the things we struggle to do well is to capture those stories so we can show the others, especially Government, the positive impacts and changes we can make in the lives of older people.

Looking to 2019, the great uncertainty is the Royal Commission into aged care. There is no doubt that this will be a bruising process for the industry and there will be many stories of poor care and neglect amongst some providers. Whilst we do not believe that we will be called to appear before the Commission, the ultimate result will affect all providers and Government and the scary thing is that no-one knows what the final outcome will be. That alone should worry Government about the possible impact on their financial outlays. Interesting times as we head to the New Year.

Notwithstanding this potential cloud, there is much to look forward to next year and the years beyond for all of us. 

Happy New Year

Stuart Shaw, General Manager

Village Voice: December 2018

December 2018

Giving Frankston residents a greater voice in community safety

The Community Safety Networks project provides Victorian communities with a direct platform to discuss local crime issues and policing priorities.

Frankston municipality is one of 12 communities where a Community Safety Network is being established, giving residents a greater voice in Victoria Police’s ongoing efforts to combat crime. Residents will have the opportunity to be involved in the project, including this short survey for people to share their insights about community safety.

The Village has been provided with three large white survey boxes with attached survey forms for Residents to share their feedback on community safety priorities. There is one located in Administration reception, Clarke reception and Robinsons reception. Frankston Police have asked the Village to encourage Residents to complete the survey and have their say about the safety issues in our community.

The community safety survey is a good reminder for when the warm weather does arrive, that we all ensure that doors are kept locked and windows are closed securely at night. As I write this article, it is 13 degrees, wet and cold and summer feels a long way away, however I am certain that very quickly the days will warm up and we will all be wishing for more rain and cooler nights.

It has been a wonderful year in the Village; on behalf of all of the staff and residents I would like to wish you all the blessings of the season,  a very merry Christmas and happy and safe New Year.

til next month

Kim Jackson, Executive Manager

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Village Voice: November 2018

November 2018

Developments Update

With Open day adding another 10 names to our waiting list, and consumer demand to move into the Village healthy and strong, I was delighted to open my email this morning and see that Frankston Council has issued final approval for building the 4 remaining units in the 900’s.

Site works may have already commenced by the time this newsletter is received. The redevelopment works near the Manning Centre continue with a planning permit expected to be lodged shortly for the next stage of units on the area where we recently demolished vacated units.

The planning permit for the first stage of the Grant Centre redevelopment is expected to be submitted in early November. We anticipate that this will take some months to work through the Council approval process before moving into the detailed drawing and service planning process that comes after Council approval and in itself takes months of preparation. I hope that by this time next year we can begin to set timeframes for the demolition of the remaining North area apartments and when site works will commence.

There are also some minor works to be done in the Lodge music room / kitchen area to improve the quality of the space there. Although these works are very minor, the Lodge is an Aged Care Home so they will require a building permit and the drawings required as part of this process have been requested.

Refurbishment works both at Village Baxter and Rosebud Village continue with neither Village having any unsold completely refurbished units, which is very pleasing. There was a large backlog of unit refurbishments that had to be completed for the 15 vacant units at Rosebud Village when it was purchased in April and this process is near completion with additional Units being vacated since then.

Units at Rosebud are selling as they are nearing completion and it is pleasing to see community interest in the Village building, in both Villages, units do take approximately 6 months from final key hand back to new resident occupation, so please be assured that even when it looks like not much is happening, the sales / refurbishment process is not currently impacted by any of the negative property market media attention.

Enjoy spring in the Village with the warmer days, sunshine and gardens with their beautiful blooms.

til next month

Kim Jackson, Executive Manager

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Village Voice: October 2018

October 2018

Royal Commission

The Government’s decision to call a Royal Commission into Aged Care has been welcomed by Providers, Resident Advocates and Industry Groups.

There is no doubt that the cases of ill-treatment that have been highlighted in the recent media are horrifying and unacceptable, but I would say in all my years of working in health and aged care I have never personally seen the kinds of things that the media are revealing. The vast majority of homes provide excellent care and the vast majority of staff, nurses and care workers are proud of their wonderful contribution to the lives of older Australians.

The Royal Commission will focus on many aspects of aged care including looking at the level of funding, the expectations of what services are required to provide for the level of funding and the true cost of providing the level of care we expect for older people. At present there are said to be over 100,000 people waiting for an appropriate Aged Care Package and this will only grow longer as the population ages.

The Royal Commission gives the whole Aged Care Industry including consumers, families, staff, governments, providers and advocacy groups an opportunity to speak out on the issues impacting their ability to access or provide the best care possible.

I encourage you to keep an interest in the Royal Commission and when the opportunity to provide feedback and submissions arise, the Village will share our views on what makes an excellent, quality service and I encourage you to do the same.

In the interim, please know that some of the stories you see in the media, often have multiple sides and potential causes. A good example is the pureed food being fed to people that was seen in one media report … what the story did not report is that this kind of special diet is essential for people who are unable to chew or swallow ordinary food properly, and that feeding a person in this condition anything other than food that is pureed would cause them to choke and suffer terrible harm.

There is no doubt that the media focus on the negative side of ageing will continue, if you see or hear anything that worries you about our care and services, please make contact with myself, Kim Male our Community Care Manager, Bridget Robinson our Manor Director of Nursing, or Danni Campbell-Manley our Lodge and Village Director of Nursing, or feel free to use any of the feedback forms located throughout the Village.

Enjoy Open Day and the warmer weather

Til next month

Kim Jackson, Executive Manager

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Village Voice: September 2018

September 2018

Spring Time

Spring is in the air, and, based upon the last few days of August with crisp mornings and beautiful days, roll on spring – enough winter!

Of course, this is a really busy time of year as we prepare our statutory accounts for audit, schedule the Annual General Meeting of Residents under the Retirement Villages Act  (25th September if you want to put the date in your calendar), and of course prepare for Open Days at Frankston South and Rosebud.

In the meantime, we have a planning permit for the 4 units at the junction of the 900’s Road and entrance 4 which will be commencing in the near future. This will complete the missing 4 units (921, 922, 923 & 924) in the 900 series.

We have also met with our architect on progressing the next stage of Manning around the croquet lawn and where the units were demolished earlier this year. The plans are being prepared for lodgement with Council seeking a permit for 8 units on this site, with six being able to be completed in the immediate future. This development also provides for another link road between Entrance 3 roadway and across to the east towards the Grant Centre. This is an integral part of our redevelopment to try and provide a better road network to more of our units.

Finally, we looked at another draft of our apartment complex planned for the area between entrances 1 and 2 opposite the Lodge. We revised our initial thoughts and are looking to establish 36 apartments immediately opposite the Lodge. We think this will be a better starting point for the project rather than our initial thoughts about stage 1 going along entrance 1. I would expect this proposal to reach Council later this year and will be an interesting discussion point with the officers and councillors.

Turning our attention back to the immediate future, we are always looking for volunteers for Open Day and if you able to give an hour or so of your time it would be appreciated. Many hands make for light work. Please contact any of the social clubs or other groups who will put you to work to raise funds for the Village. Of course, we would also like you to invite family and friends to the Village on the day to enjoy the festivities.

If you happen to be a football fan, then finals time is also on us. As some of you know, I am a Swans supporter (or South Melbourne supporter for accuracy) and, whilst I am happy for them to reach the finals this year, I am not certain they are playing a brand of football that will take out the prize. Hope springs eternal – go swannies.

Till next month

Stuart Shaw, General Manager

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Village Voice: August 2018

August 2018

My Health Record

‘My Health Record’ has existed for a few years now and is an online summary of your key health information managed by the Commonwealth Government. Previously it required people to ‘Opt In’ however from 15th of October 2018, all people with a Medicare or DVA card will be automatically ‘Opted In’ unless you choose to ‘Opt Out’. Please understand this is NOT an initiative by Village Baxter, it is an Australia wide Commonwealth Government Program.

The ‘My Health Record’ allows healthcare providers to access your health information securely online. Whether you’re visiting a GP for a check-up, or in an emergency room following an accident and are unable to talk, healthcare providers involved in your care can access important health information, such as:

  • Allergies
  • Medicines you are taking
  • Medical conditions you have been diagnosed with
  • Pathology test results like blood tests

Access to information is controlled and people can adjust their individual settings to allow trusted people, such as family members, friends or carers, to view and help manage your health information. People can apply restrictions to the information that healthcare provider organisations can see and even restrict access to specific documents in your ‘My Health Record’.

On the surface this appears to be a very complex process for anyone who does not use the internet and have a ‘mygov’ account, however there is a telephone help line available. The ‘My Health Record’ information brochure that has been reproduced in this month’s Village Voice to assist your understanding of what ‘My Health Record’ is and how it can be of use to you in your future health care.

I encourage you to stay informed and consider the benefits of using ‘My Health Record’. It is likely that as the October 15 ‘Opt Out’ deadline approaches, there will be a lot of media attention on the potential problems with the system and if you are concerned about something you hear, please talk with your Doctor or call the helpline to get all of the facts before making a decision to ‘Opt Out’.

Til next month.

Kim Jackson, Executive Manager

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Village Voice: July 2018

July 2018

End of Financial Year

July – a new financial year, winter has well and truly set in, hopefully we have all had our flu shots and staying warm, time marches on and you wonder where did the last 6 months go? One thing is for certain, life continues at a hectic pace for many of us, and smelling the roses seems a long way off.

However, I can give you an update on a variety of matters and some other information that may be of interest. In no particular order:

We now have a new yellow complaints form for use if you are lodging a formal complaint under the Retirement Village Act. This change has come about through changes to the legislation which now require us to make the form more informative. The result is the simple one page form that we used to use has now become nine pages.   The one page green form can still be used for comments, complaints or suggestions for other matters outside of the legislation.

At the last residents’ meeting, I advised the group that our planning application for the 4 units opposite 916 – 920 has now been lodged with Council for a planning permit. A drawing of the development has been placed in the Clarke, Manning and Parkside centres.

Also at the last residents’ meeting, I discussed the current level of demand for our Lodge and Manor and the reality that some patience is required at this time. To ensure no unnecessary delays, if you are needing to relocate into either of our aged care facilities, you should ensure that all your necessary paperwork has been completed – referrals, financials etc. This then sparked the comment that we should again run the seminar on “Making the Transition from Independent Living to Aged Care” with updates. This has been arranged for 4th July at 11.00 in the Chapel. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Crank/ Spam callers – many residents have had Microsoft, Telstra, NBN and other similar organisations claiming that your computer has a virus and needs to be checked, someone has hacked your computer and requires a reboot, your phone is out of order etc etc. My view is simple – if there is any delay in responding once you pick up the handset, hang up. If the call comes straight through to you and these (or similar) claims are made – hang up. If you think the call is legitimate, ask for the person’s identification number and then check with the company concerned (look up the phone number yourself – do not use the phone number they may have given you). 

And, finally, a quick update on Rosebud. We have welcomed 2 new residents who moved in late June. We are currently refurbishing the vacant units as we have another 5 people who are waiting to join us. We are yet to start any advertising as we have no units to actually show to prospective residents, so these potential residents have all arrived through word of mouth. This is a very pleasing start for the Village.

Stay warm.

Stuart Shaw, General Manager

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Village Voice: June 2018

June 2018


Winter is settling in and it can all feel a little gloomy sometimes. Here are some strategies to improve your well-being over the darker, colder months. 

  1. Get out of the house each day, even if it is just to stand outside the front door and breathe in the fresh air.
  2. Find something that makes you laugh.
  3. Say “no” to things you don’t want to do.
  4. Give yourself a healthy treat and remind yourself you have worked hard and deserve it.
  5. Clear the clutter – even if it is just one drawer.
  6. Don’t sweat the small stuff, some things really aren’t worth getting upset about.
  7. Put on your favourite music.
  8. Eat a healthy lunch (and an afternoon snack).
  9. Pause for a moment and think about what your senses are experiencing through taste, touch, smell, sight, sound, appreciate and enjoy the moment.
  10. Move your body, just stretching your arms up or legs out can feel good.
  11. Connect with a friend or relative.
  12. Add more light by letting in natural sunlight when possible and turning on the lights.

Be proactive about your health and get your flu vaccine and ask your loved ones to do the same. If you are coughing or sneezing, please do not share your illness with others, and especially do not attend activities, events or visit the Manor or Lodge.

The flu or a nasty virus may only cause a mild cough, sneeze or loss of voice in a healthy person, but that healthy person with very mild symptoms can still pass that flu or virus onto someone more vulnerable who will end up with severe symptoms and illness.

Please don’t use the “it’s just a cold” excuse and still socialise in the Village while you are unwell because your “cold” can be much worse in someone else. It is also very important that you notify anyone who is visiting your unit that you are unwell, Hostesses, nurses and maintenance staff need to know if you are sick so they can protect themselves before they come into your unit.  

Stay well, stay warm and enjoy the lovely fresh winter air.

Til next month.
Kim Jackson, Executive Manager

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Village Voice: May 2018

May 2018

Aged Care Assessment Process

If this seems all a bit overwhelming as it can for many people, you can ask the Village Nurse or your Doctor to make a request for you to be assessed using the health professional referral process. If you would like to make the referral yourself or know more about the assessment process, the information below is from the website.

Before you can access any government-funded services, you must have a My Aged Care assessment. An assessment helps to ensure you receive the care and support you need and will work out your care needs and what types of care and services you may be eligible for. You are welcome to have another person, such as a family member, friend or your carer, with you during your assessment.

My Aged Care will work out if you need an assessment to access services. Start by calling My Aged Care on 1800 200 422, with your Medicare card ready when you call. The staff will ask for permission to create a client record to register you with My Aged Care.

This holds:

  • information about your needs
  • results of any assessments
  • details of any aged care services you receive

They will also ask you questions about:

  • any support you are currently receiving
  • any health concerns you may have
  • how you are managing with activities around the home
  • your safety in the home

Your answers will help them understand your care needs. Based on the information you give My Aged Care, you may be referred for:

  • a home support assessment with a Regional Assessment Service (RAS) if you need low level support to stay independent in your home.
  • a comprehensive assessment with an Aged Care Assessment Service (ACAT) if you have more complex care needs.

With your consent, the contact centre will give your My Aged Care client record to an assessor. This saves you retelling your story.

If you have immediate needs, My Aged Care may also refer you directly to services before your assessment takes place.

Til next month.
Kim Jackson, Executive Manager

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Village Voice: April 2018

April 2018

Manor and Lodge and what is an Aged Care Home

Years ago the distinction between low care (Hostels) and High Care (Nursing Homes) was really clear and everyone understood that eventually someone would probably move from the Hostel to Nursing Home. In July 2014 this clear line of distinction was removed by the Commonwealth Government and all hostels and nursing homes became collectively known as Aged Care Homes.

The Village planned for this change and we extended the Lodge and closed the old Hostel to ensure that the Lodge would be able to meet the needs of high care residents. Several staffing changes were made last year and the transition is complete, we no longer need to relocate residents between the Manor and Lodge (unless someone specifically needs the Memory Support Unit).

For our Aged Care Homes, we now run one single waiting list for both the Manor and Lodge as there is no distinction between the two facilities. The memory support waiting list is separate for this specialised placement. In order to be eligible to be offered a place, two pieces of documentation must be provided to the Village:

1. The myagedcare approval that says the person has Government approval for Permanent Residential Care and
2. The letter received back from Centrelink that shows the result of the person’s Combined Income and Assets Assessment.

The Centrelink letter is very important because that shows if you are eligible for Government support for your accommodation and we keep over 40% of our places for people who fall into that category. This can take up to a month to receive back from Centrelink so it is important to ensure that it is completed as early as possible when a move to permanent residential care is looking likely.

Once we have received both of the above pieces of documentation, we can place a person on the waiting list and then offer a suitable place when one becomes available.

Recently we have had a small number of supported places available in the Manor and we have been able to offer them to people outside of the Village as there were no eligible Village residents with the completed documentation or the place was refused because the residents still clung to the past way of thinking the Lodge was different to the Manor.

The full refurbishment and renovation of the Manor last year has been wonderful for the Residents and Staff, please don’t miss out on a place in care because you don’t realise that the Manor and Lodge offer the same kinds of care.

Til next month.
Kim Jackson, Executive Manager

Download Village Voice April 2018