Cara Miller is the CEO of North Eastern Community Hospital and Aged Care located in South Australia. In this interview, Cara shares how she was introduced to the Governing for Reform in Aged Care Program, her favourite learning activities in the Program, and why she believes other aged care leaders should enrol in the Program.
1. What made you enrol in the Program? / How did you find out about the Program?
Initially I was on the Board of Directors and the Governing for Reform portal was introduced to us by the executive team of the organisation. It was very clear that this was an excellent platform to learn and understand the regulatory and governance requirements in aged care. As a Board, we agreed to undertake the Core Modules to ensure everyone understood the governance expectations and also to enhance our knowledge. As a Board, we were also evolving in what information and data we needed to see to be accountable to that governance role in the aged care sector.
2. In your learnings as part of the Governing for Reform in Aged Care Program, what stood out to you the most?
Reform in aged care encompasses everyone. The program provides modules and learning opportunities to address key areas that are covered in the Aged Care Quality Standards and expectations for the sector. The duality of learning enables us to save the flip guides for future reference, whilst the interactive modules step through knowledge, understanding, and scenarios and then tests this against a checklist for our organisation. The checklist becomes a mental list of where we need to apply focus to enhance our responsibilities.
3. What are you going to put in practice / have you already put in practice after engaging with the Program?
As CEO of an aged care organisation, the basis of learning and challenging our thinking is very alive operationally. The Governing for Reform program has changed what we report to the Board and how we measure success across the ACQSC Standards. We have implemented more community forums through to dashboard reporting and sector benchmarking for our clinical indicators. We encourage our Board to participate in relevant Governing for Reform webinars and provide an update for those who didn’t attend.
4. In your opinion, why should other executives and governing body members enrol in the Program?
Aged Care reform is evolving. There are changing expectations and all levels of the executive and governing boards need to understand their obligations. Governing for Reform is an easy and interactive way to enhance knowledge, it is not onerous and should be a mandatory requirement for decision makers in aged care organisations. If we are truly to reform and set high expectations for our aged care sector, then we all need to be clear on our obligations.
5. Finally, we would love one more fun question to get to know you better – what do you love to do in your spare time?
Learn to pick locks. I went to a cyber training event once that had lock picking kits as a team building and fun exercise. It is quite challenging to perfect the technique and makes for a great conversation starter!
To join learners like Cara, sign up for the Governing for Reform in Aged Care Program today.