How can the Australian health care system be more responsive to the needs of older persons and their carers? Here’s how.


A Deeble Institute for Health Policy Research perspectives brief led by Dr Hannah Beks from Deakin Rural Health and DELIVER researchers lays the foundations for engaging older persons and their carers as co-researchers to improve healthcare delivery.


Adapting healthcare systems to shifting population demographics is crucial, especially given the global rise in the proportion of individuals aged 60 years and older—an upward trend expected to persist for the next few decades. The Australian Government’s Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety (2021) has emphasised the necessity of improving healthcare delivery to meet the specific needs of older individuals and their caregivers. It highlights the significance of participatory health research, involving older individuals and their caregivers as co-researchers.

In this Perspective Brief, “Translating policy into practice by engaging older persons and their carers as co-researchers”, Dr Hannah Beks and DELIVER researchers identify and explore three key areas pivotal for translating the Royal Commission’s recommendations into practice. These areas include:

  • understanding barriers and facilitators to engaging older individuals and their caregivers in health research,
  • optimizing their involvement as co-researchers in participatory health research, and
  • addressing the distinctive needs of specific populations such as First Nations Elders, older individuals, and caregivers from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, as well as those residing in non-metropolitan settings.
Read the Perspectives Brief here.


  • About the author: Western Alliance

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