Negative stereotyping of older people is reinforced in the media, and this both informs and reflects societal attitudes. In Western society especially, we fear dependency, invisibility and dying. Aged care is a silo of these fears. And until it affects us personally, we ignore it.
We have an expiry date in our society. This is not the date we die, but a time when our skills and knowledge are no longer considered to be valid or useful. Our value is largely determined by our economic contributions to society. But for many older people, this is difficult to demonstrate because they’re no longer in the workforce.
Older people were exposed to a revolving door of anonymous workers, significantly reducing opportunities for teamwork and fostering relationships between staff and residents.
Encouraging more healthcare professionals to enter the aged care sector will require a multi-pronged approach, starting with finding ways to engender more professional respect for those working in the field.