It’s funny, almost everyone has a perception of what working in aged care is like. But often, it’s a long way from our day-to-day reality! So, we thought we’d dispel three common misconceptions you might have. Because our people genuinely love what they do and they’re more than happy to help you understand why!

Myth 1: Aged care is slow-paced. Where’s the challenge?

Working in aged care requires patience and attention to detail; that much is true. But as for monotonous or slow-paced? We asked our people, and here’s what they told us.

“Slow? Try working a shift and see how you feel! Every day is different and while it’s busy most of the time, it’s very rewarding.”

– Ellie, Lifestyle Assistant

“I don’t think people realise how much responsibility our Registered Nurses hold. You have to advocate for the residents, make sure everything is followed in their care plan and make clinical decisions when people get sick. That is a big challenge. You are managing staff while providing this high level of holistic care.”

– Hariz, Clinical Nurse

“Probably the biggest challenge working in the aged care homes is that you are always busy. We have more than 2,000 staff, and it’s really working out where you can make the most difference with your time.”

– Lauren, Safety Business Partner

Myth 2: Aged care is depressing

A career in aged care isn’t for the faint-hearted; there is no way around this. But you’ll get to work alongside people who bring plenty of camaraderie and laughter. Not to mention the joy many of our residents and clients give us!

“It’s hard when you lose a client. That really, really hurts. But day-to-day, you can have a chat with clients, and they just make you giggle. Some of them are just so warm and funny.”

– Josh, Home Support Worker

“Aged care can be very serious, so it’s good to have a bit of fun while you’re at work – and there’s definitely some characters living and working at Helping Hand! I love to have a joke with the residents or sometimes I’ll do something funny just to make someone laugh. I like to think I can bring a bit of sunshine to people’s lives.”

– Ellie, Lifestyle Assistant

“I said to my manager, I think I can develop an exercise program that is both fun and gets the desired results. So, I made a proposal, got it approved, and now I’m doing bachata dance classes with our clients, which is fantastic!”

– Thien, Physiotherapist

Myth 3: Older people are hard to deal with

Every person in our care is an individual; there is no mould for what an older person should be. Our people often tell us the most rewarding part of their work is the relationships and connections they build with those we care for.

“Hearing the life stories of my clients amazes me. The people I work with have been through world wars and recessions; they were struggling, but they were content. Hearing their stories and life experiences makes me go home each night and be grateful for what I have.”

– Josh, Home Support Worker

“People generally don’t realise we care a whole lot more deeply about the people living in our care homes than the broader community understands. Our staff come to work every day because they want to support people to have a good experience.”

– Donna, Residential Services Group Manager

“I know who my residents are. Maybe they were unhappy today, and I made a difference to that, no matter how big or small. In a hospital environment, as soon as you make a connection with a client, they’re discharged or moved to a different ward. Whereas here, it’s different. You actually get to know the residents, and they will share their stories with you. It becomes like a community, almost like a family. I don’t think you can get that working in a hospital setting.”

– Hariz, Clinical Nurse

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