TLC Healthcare (TLC) is approaching healthcare from a new perspective. TLC is dedicated to being leaders in innovative and integrated healthcare renowned for providing wellbeing to their local communities. Their focus is for customers to have access to the best quality integrated healthcare, when and where they need it. TLC offers ‘ageing in place’ so that residents can remain in their chosen home throughout their cycle of care, provided that it is appropriate for their needs. TLC owns and operates residential aged care homes, medical centres and industry training facilities at locations across Melbourne and the Geelong region. Their pioneering philosophy of integrating residential aged care homes, primary care medical centres and industry training is a first for Australia. TLC is looking to a future where all facets of healthcare are approached in an integrated fashion. As the organisation grows, they will be expanding their portfolio with a wide range of holistic health care services that will benefit customers and local communities on multiple levels. TLC Aged Care was founded in 1991 and when they built their first home, they wanted to ensure that it provided residents with privacy, dignity, and an environment they could call home. This way of thinking has continued with the opening of each of TLC’s new homes. TLC Healthcare’s mission is to be leaders in innovative and integrated healthcare renowned for providing wellbeing to their communities.
In the past, the residential aged care industry has seen itself as separate to the sectors of acute care and a primary care. There has been a resistance from the aged care industry to see itself as in integral part of the health system as a whole. The integration of TLC’s commercial primary care medical centres into their residential aged care homes was a first for Australia. Other aged care providers in the market had engaged the services of general practitioners, but no other organisation had done this in a medical centre setting, that also services the local community. The final stage of the development of TLC Primary Care came with the integration of specialty and allied health services into the medical centres. Physiotherapy, dietetics and podiatry was being provided at TLC’s residential aged care homes on an outsourced basis. The decision was made to integrate these services into their in-house offering to provide care to the aged care residents, and also the patients of the medical centre.
For the residents of TLC’s aged care homes, the presence of these services provides certainty of medical supervision, continuity of care, reduced clinical errors, better clinical outcomes, greater convenience and access to a wide range of activities improving their well-being and connection to the local community. In order to attract the best quality medical practitioners, TLC Primary Care would also be public-facing medical centres offering primary care not just to the residents of the aged care home, but also to the wider community. This provided their medical practitioners with the ability to grow a commercial practice, and enjoy a cohort of existing high-yield patients. TLC’s homes have become a community hub for social support, primary healthcare, allied healthcare, palliative care, dementia care and other support services for elderly citizens while continuing to provide residential aged care accommodation.