PROJECT REPORT: Measuring Quality and Consumer Choice in Aged Care

The Measuring Quality and Consumer Choice in Aged Care project sought to hear the views of older people, and their friends, family and other supporters on:

  1. How they go about choosing an aged care provider (residential aged care and in-home care/community support);
  2. What their views are about indicators of quality when choosing aged care services; and
  3. What other information they need/would like to make choices about aged care providers.

The project conducted an online survey with consumers, including their representatives (yielding 676 respondents) and providers of aged care services (yielding 416 respondents). In addition, focus groups were held in 7 capital cities (with 65 consumers and 93 providers registering to attend, and 30 consumers and 64 providers participating). In addition to the national survey and focus groups, 67 consumer participants were engaged in a SA-based deeper dive consultation through The Plug-In run by COTA South Australia.

This report includes:

  • A summary of the project’s key findings including COTA Australia’s recommendations
  • An overview of project findings
  • A literature review on ‘thinking about choices and quality in aged care’
  • Summary of the results from the online consumer and online provider surveys
  • The Plug-In Project process ‘Quality in Aged Care through the eyes of consumers

Note: COTA Australia received funds from the Department of Health to develop a ‘consumer led consultation process to consider systems and indicators of quality and safety in aged care’. COTA expanded upon the core requirements of the project set out by the Department of Health to broaden our investigation to also consider information consumers think most relevant for choosing an aged care provider; in addition to information about quality and safety within aged care. The results contained herein should not be interpreted as implying the view of Government or the Department of Health.