New Behaviour Support Plan requirements for residential aged care providers from 1 September

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Residential aged care providers have to meet new behaviour support plan requirements intended to minimise or eliminate the need for chemical or other restraint from this week.

Starting 1 September, Aged Care Act amendments and Quality Care Principles make it mandatory for providers to have behaviour support plans in place whenever there are behavioural changes, restraint is imposed, or likely to be imposed. This change is for all residents of residential aged care including those living with dementia with changed behaviours.

Dementia Support Australia (DSA), a program funded by the Australian Government and led by aged care provider HammondCare, has released a resources toolkit to assist aged care providers meet the new behaviour support plan requirements.

The requirements are a response to recommendations in the Aged Care Royal Commission’s Final Report. The Royal Commission heard evidence of people living with dementia in residential aged care homes being inappropriately prescribed psychotropic medication or subjected to physical restraint.

The amendments provide powers for the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission (ACQSC) to respond to the inappropriate use of restrictive practices.

To access the Behaviour Support Plan resources, go to