Defining key groups and integrated care
Who are professional caregivers?
Home, community and residential care staff who receive payment for their work fall within the category of professional caregivers. Services for older people in need of care and assistance should be provided by skilled and competent workers with a decent salary and stable working conditions, and according to a manageable workload. Workers’ rights should be respected and confidentiality, professional ethics and professional autonomy protected. Opportunities for continuous learning and improvement should be available to all care staff (WeDo Project 2012).
Who are informal caregivers?
Informal caregivers are most often family, however they can also include friends, neighbours and important others who provide care to an older person in need of assistance. They do not usually have a formal status and are usually unpaid.
The aim of integrated care is to design and implement individual care pathways, financially and administratively coordinated with a view to achieving better outcomes in terms of effectiveness and user satisfaction. The provision of appropriate care at the right moment in the most appropriate setting implies collaboration in multi-disciplinary teams, collaboration between providers and agencies, all of which should take place in collaboration with the older person in need of care and assistance and their carers (WeDo Project 2012).
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