Dedicated to Mind, Body and Spirit

Estia Health

At Estia Health Pty Ltd, high-trained and compassionate staff are dedicated to ensuring all resident needs are met in a home-like atmosphere which emphasises a balance of active and fulfilling lifestyle activities and a peaceful and relaxing environment.

“One of the biggest drivers in our care is that residents have choice and they have independence,” says Ruvani de Silva. While providing care 24 hours a day, seven days a week is vital, the Executive Director of Nursing is especially proud of the skills, dedication, and genuine commitment to working with older persons at all of Estia Health’s eight facilities across Victoria. “Our staff have to be absolutely excited about looking after the elderly,” comments Ms de Silva. “They need to have passion, and have the joy of life. They want to make a difference and be part of a happy home.” Educating and training staff to excel and move up to the next level within the organisation helps them maintain their interest in helping others, and betters Estia Health and its residents as a whole.

“Estia Health offers choice at every turn, because what we’re trying to promote is life quality on a daily basis,” Ms de Silva says. “The clinical care is a given, but their life quality programme is very open-ended, and we give as much as we can give them and allow them to have. The key to this is trying to maintain their feeling of belonging in the community while they are a little bit secluded from it.”

Celebrating Life

With the motto, “A place where life is valued, celebrated and respected,” Estia Health is positioned to serve the aged care needs of Victoria’s residents today, tomorrow and in the years to come.

“People are living longer, and there will be a high demand of people seeking aged care going forward,” says Peter Arvanitis, Chief Executive Officer at Estia Health. As a result, many residents coming in for care are already at a more advanced age than in years past, and may have greater physical or mental health issues. To care for these individuals, staff are being educated on an ongoing basis, and better practice procedures are being implemented to meet and surpass the needs of all residents.

Formed in 2005 as Lasting Changes Aged Care Services, the organisation recently underwent a rebranding as Estia Health which will see a new logo, updated website, and increased brand awareness; the new name serves as a reflection of the company’s commitment to ongoing growth and development. “The name ‘Estia’ actually means home and hearth in ancient language,” explains Nick Yannopoulos, Chief Operations Officer. “The reason for the name is a fresh corporate look to the industry.” At the same time as the name change, the company created a corporate motto based on “Estia,” representing Excellence, Sustainability, Teamwork, Innovation, and Achievement. Although the name is new, there will be no change to Estia’s management and service and standards provided to residents will remain high.

In the past, many Australian aged care facilities were small, ‘mum and dad’ operations. Not all met the high standards set by Estia, and at the time of the Global Financial Crisis, a number were in receivership, faced financial sanctions, or had poor compliance issues. Instead of seeing these homes going under – and jeopardising the well-being of residents and staff – a number were acquired under Estia, representing the organisation’s most significant growth phase to date.

“At that time, we saw it as an opportunity for the homes not to close, but to continue to provide a service,” says Mr Arvanitis. “If I could purchase them and turn the compliance and financial viability around as well, then we would have some homes that we would be proud of and would continue to provide a service to the community.”

To meet future aged care demands – and to maintain unparalleled resident care on all levels – Estia has a short to medium-term strategic growth projection in place which will see its number of homes increase. With a strong senior management team in place – one which has dealt with compliance and financial viability at a very high level – Estia is confident it will continue to make a significant contribution to growing the industry and to providing excellent service over the coming decades.

Quality Care at All Locations

With eight aged care facility locations including Werribee Terrace, Trinity Garden, Grace Garden, Heritage Lakes, Waldreas Village, Knoxville, Beltleigh Manor and Grandview Gardens, Estia Health is able to meet the needs of residents in Melton South, Heidelberg West, Knoxfield, Dandenong, and other areas across Victoria. To ensure services remain consistent from one location to the next, the best quality allied services are sourced and distributed across all facilities, including medical services from podiatrists, audiologists, optometrists, and dieticians. “We screen them carefully, and when we find groups which are in sympathy with our own philosophy of care and have their own standards of excellence or pursuit of that, then we usually have a very good combination in which to go forward into each facility,” remarks Ms de Silva.

At Estia Health, staff are focused on meeting the needs of all residents with dignity, and respect them as individuals with their own unique wishes, needs, and aspirations. With an environment which is safe, welcoming and comfortable, Estia residents and their loved ones can enjoy peace of mind knowing that caring staff are working on their behalf 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, while Registered Nurses ensure management and administration of medication is carried out diligently. Quality nutritious meals – along with home-made cakes, scones and slices for morning and afternoon tea – are prepared by chefs on-site and are nutritionally balanced to meet the needs of every resident and his or her special dietary requirements.

At Estia Health, residents are encouraged to make friendships and engage in social activities which stimulate the body and mind, such as concerts and shows, bus trips, films, church services, exercises to music and physio exercise groups, cards, bingo, and much more. Offering degrees of care to meet the needs of all residents, extra personal care is available, and since all Estia residences are ageing-in-place facilities, residents have the flexibility to move between different levels of care as their needs change, eliminating the need to relocate to another facility.

Embracing Technology to Serve Residents

As part of Estia Health’s ongoing commitment to providing superior service on all levels, the organisation strives for the best in clinical care for all its residents. Another way in which the organisation stands out is its Video Telehealth. In the past, residents needing to see a medical specialist such as a dermatologist had to wait weeks for an appointment, needed to be transported to hospital, and usually have a staff member stay with them the entire time and accompany them back to Estia Health – a long and tiring process. With Video Telehealth, the transportation and waiting time is eliminated, and the resident can remain comfortable in bed while specialists connect via Skype to conduct examinations.

“It is effortless – medical staff who are on standby and doing clinical rounds for the day just talk with the General Practitioner at the resident’s bedside, and the next steps are arranged,” says Ms de Silva. “What this does is bring specialist services and advice to the bedside, and cuts out the transport and waiting time that quite often elderly people have to endure when going to hospital for outpatient appointments.” The organisation is exploring a similar application of the technology for dentistry, which would allow residents to remain safe and comfortable prior to any invasive treatments required.

“We’re probably the first complete company to sign on, meaning every one of our facilities is signed up with Medicare and with participating GPs to go ahead and do this,” comments Ms de Silva.

Along with Video Telehealth, Estia stands apart in other uses of medical technology, including the upcoming use of visiting radiographers to take X-rays on-site, which will save hours of time spent arranging transportation, and will eliminate the need to accompany residents to hospital and back again to the facility. In cases where more advanced diagnostics are required – such as CAT scans – staff or nominated third-party escort services will accompany residents to and from hospital.

Meeting Future Needs

As the nation’s population ages, Estia Health continues to take a proactive approach on all levels, from training its staff to embracing technological innovations to make life easier for residents. Currently in the infancy stage of community care packages, staff realise the need for home care, which they are considering implementing.

“People coming in are getting older and more frail,” says Ms de Silva. “What used to be a low level of care person is now higher in their everyday needs. We would really like to start assessing in the homes, so when people are starting to flag and there is the need to come into Estia Health for care, we are envisaging that we would have a team of staff who could go into the home to start that process, to allay the anxieties, to do the initial clinical assessments and reviews, so by the time they come into the somewhat traumatic time for their admission, a lot of that paperwork and administrative work and clinical work up is already in place, and we can focus on the life quality, which begins from the moment they come in the doors.”

With a talented, professional staff and an exceptionally strong senior management group, Estia Health looks forward to meeting the aged care needs of the elderly throughout Victoria, and possibly nationally. According to Mr Arvanitis, the organisation’s success – past, present and future – comes down to being passionate about helping others.

“We feel that we will have a point of difference in continuing to make sure we have and improve our level of care for our clients,” he says, “and we at Estia Health will continue to support aged care services through growth for a very long time to come.”

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October 20, 2018, 10:31 AM AEDT

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