SummitCare’s residential aged care home in Wallsend, Newcastle begins a new era as it completes a period of transformation that now sees it ranked as one of the region’s leading aged care services by its residents and their families.
SummitCare is one of New South Wales’ most respected aged care providers. With nine homes across Sydney and one in Newcastle, the group is known for its clinical care, its innovative programs, and the skill and compassion of its staff.
While all aged care homes in Australia face operational challenges under increased regulation and consumer scrutiny, SummitCare is rising to the challenge.
“At this point in time, responsible aged care operators really need to step up,” says SummitCare Chief Operating Officer, Michelle Sloane.
“With findings from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, and under the COVID-19 restrictions that we currently face, it is the responsibility of all service providers to re-commit to their overall goal of providing expert care, with dignity and respect, to some of our most vulnerable Australians.”
Ms Sloane says that the operational implications are clear.
“At every one of our SummitCare homes, we review our procedures, policies and protocols regularly, we constantly assess our levels of supervision and we work hard to continuously improve our monitoring and reporting. The result is that our care is rated by our residents, their families and our professional partners as high quality.”
As an example, SummitCare Wallsend has undergone a major review, leading to improved clinical governance and risk management, more staff training and better communication both within the broader business and with outside communities such as visiting GPs, industry and families.
“Our Wallsend home has faced its challenges over the years but has emerged strong and thoughtful in the range of care it delivers,” says Michelle.
“Its structure is unique to aged care with two senior General Managers in charge – one to focus on care and the other to focus on accommodation services and administration within the home.”
SummitCare began operations in 1966, opening the doors of Wentworth Convalescent Nursing Home in New South Wales.
More than 50 years later, the company prides itself on its values of being welcoming, obliging, respectful and honest, with a deep commitment to teamwork and provision of compassionate care.
“SummitCare continues to deliver consistency in excellence for aged care,” adds Ms Sloane. “Our purpose is to enable wellbeing all day every day for more 900 people requiring our care. We are professional and supportive in caring for our aged community as if they were our own family.
“All organisations go through challenging times that are not of their making. We’re proud to say that our residents and families have always remained our number one priority. We blend our family values with excellence in care and corporate diligence to deliver the best in person-centred care.
“Now is the time for the aged care sector to take a good, hard look at its values and remember just exactly why we do what we do, and how important and valued our work really is.”