Design for Care

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


New research:
A comprehensive look at psychological injury and work-related mental health claims in the Healthcare & Social Assistance industry

About this research

The Centre for Transformative Work Design is leading an exciting initiative in partnership with the University of Sydney Business School and Monash University to understand how work design can be leveraged as an intervention to prevent psychological injury (e.g., burnout, sustained work stress) in the H&SA industry. At the heart of Design for Care are prevention of psychological injury through the sustainability of good work design practices.

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Design for Care is funded by


In partnership with organisations and individuals in the NSW H&SA industry

The Design for Care approach


Our approach is focused on prevention and sustainability.

Healthcare Workers

Prevention is about shifting the focus from treating to preventing psychological injury before it even occurs. At its core, prevention involves ensuring good work design practices.


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 placing a long-term focus on developing interventions that generate a lasting impact for teams and organisations.

From a work design perspective, this is about building the work design capabilities in individuals, teams, team leaders, and organisations to continue to co-create mentally healthy workplaces, not only now but also in the future.

Organisation research partners

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Our participatory research program

The PARRTH process

The Centre for Transformative Work Design and University of Sydney Business School have partnered with multiple organisations in the aged care, disability care, and out-of-home care sectors to implement transformative work practices to improve and sustain staff wellbeing. Our research program - the PARRTH Process – involves working collaboratively with individuals, teams, and leaders to develop practical work design interventions that could be adapted by the H&SA industry more broadly. These research partnerships will provide important insights into the strengths and opportunities around work design for wellbeing in the H&SA industry.

Our partnering organisations have access to world-leading work design experts who use evidence-based strategies to explore co-create sustainable work redesign initiatives to  maintain and improve wellbeing.  



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.  

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Online Workshop

Design for Care Community of Practice

​The aim of the community of practice is 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 for mental health and well-being in the care and community work health care and social assistance industry.

They include:

  • Members of government agencies with high engagement in the industry

  • Members of icare insured and non-insured H&SA industry organisations 

  • Professionals in the field

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


Community of practice members are directly involved with researchers and collaborate with industry peers to explore evidence-based approaches to improving work design and wellbeing. The members share their diverse industry knowledge and experience to inform the direction and outcomes of the research.

Project team members

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Sharon Parker

Curtin University
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Associate Professor
Anya Johnson

University of Sydney
Associate Professor
Helena Nguyen

University of Sydney
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Alex Collie

Monash University
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Dr Shanta Dey

University of Sydney
Dr Anu Jolly

Curtin University
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Dr Nate Zettna

University of Sydney

Dr Cheryl Yam

Curtin University
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Dr Vivien Forner

University of Sydney
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Dr Shannon Gray

Monash University
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Dr Asmare Gelaw

Monash University
Dr Giverny de Boeck

IESEG School of Management
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Meredith Carr

Curtin University
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Working Together

To learn more and register your interest, please contact us

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