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Clinic

Design for Care

Designing better work for the Healthcare and Social Assistance (H&SA) industry

Our mission is to improve the well-being of H&SA employees through the co-creation of SMART work design interventions.

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About us

Design for Care is a research project aimed at developing and assessing work design interventions to create mentally healthy work in the NSW healthcare and social assistance (H&SA) industry. The project is led by Professor Sharon Parker at Curtin University’s Centre for Transformative Work Design, with Professors Anya Johnson & Helena Nguyen at the University of Sydney, and Professor Alex Collie at Monash University. The project is supported by a team of research and professional staff across the three universities, and is funded by icare NSW.

We collaborate with multiple organisations in the aged care, disability care, and out-of-home care sectors to co-create mentally healthy workplaces. Together, we're working to understand how work design can be leveraged as an intervention to prevent psychological injury (e.g., burnout).

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Our Latest Research​

In this report, we surveyed over 1300 individuals and interviewing 78 of them across the Healthcare and Social Assistance (H&SA) industry over the past 18 months. These findings are currently informing the design of evidence-based interventions to address and prevent psychosocial risks across the five partnering Design for Care organisations.

Including aged care (Whiddon and Bankstown City Aged Care), disability care (Lifestart and Macarthur Disability Services) and out of home care (Key Assets Australia). Our report highlights the critical role that work design plays in shaping mental health.

We partner with organisations and individuals in the NSW H&SA industry

The Design for Care approach

 

Our approach is focused on prevention and sustainability.

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The Design for Care Program seeks to prevent psychological injury by identifying SMART work design opportunities and challenges in collaboration with individuals, teams, and team leaders in the Health Care and Social Assistance industry.​

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Sustainability is about building the work design capabilities in individuals, teams, team leaders, and organisations to continue to co-create mentally healthy workplaces.

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Our research program - the PARRTH Process – involves working collaboratively with individuals, teams, and leaders to develop practical work design interventions that target prevention and sustainability and could be adapted by the H&SA industry more broadly. 

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The PARRTH process involves:

  • Preparing an organisation for change;

  • Assessing work design and well-being;  

  • Reflecting with the organisation staff and management about the assessment results;  

  • Redesigning work and/or organisational processes where appropriate and feasible;  

  • Tracking the effect of the redesign; and  

  • Habituating the change into the daily functioning of the organisation.  

DFC Approach
DFC Partners
PARRTH
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Our research partners

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Testimonials from partner organisation senior leaders:

"What a great project to be involved with. Can only see positive things eventuating from this."

Design for Care Community of Practice

The community of practice aims to maximise the impact of the Design for Care project by ensuring that the research and the learnings can reach, educate and support frontline healthcare and social assistance workers.

The Community of Practice is made up of an experienced and diverse group of industry representatives who would like to contribute to better support mental health and well-being in the care and community work H&SA industry.

They include:

  • Members of government agencies with high engagement in the industry

  • Professionals in the field

  • Members of associations representing the interests of H&SA industry organisations and workers

 

 The members share their diverse industry knowledge and experience to inform the direction and outcomes of the research.

PROJECT TEAM

Project leads

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Sharon K. Parker

PROFESSOR

CURTIN UNIVERSITY

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Anya Johnson

PROFESSOR

UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY

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Helena Nguyen

PROFESSOR

UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY

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Alex Collie

PROFESSOR

MONASH UNIVERSITY

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Project members

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Lucinda Iles

CURTIN UNIVERSITY

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Dr Cheryl Yam

CURTIN UNIVERSITY

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Dr Arian Kunzelmann

CURTIN UNIVERSITY

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Dr Vivien Forner

UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY

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Dr Nate Zettna

UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY

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Dr Mina Askovic

UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY

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Connie Deng

UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY

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Emmilly Mendelevich

UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY

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Dr Asmare Gelaw

MONASH UNIVERSITY

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Dr Shannon Gray

MONASH UNIVERSITY

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Dr Jannecke Berecki-Gisolf

MONASH UNIVERSITY

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Dr Giverny de Boeck

IESEG School of Management

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Meredith Carr

CURTIN UNIVERSITY

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Monica Trezise

CURTIN UNIVERSITY

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Cati Thomas

CURTIN UNIVERSITY

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Anu Jolly

UNIVERSITY OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA

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Previous project highlights

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