National Aged Care Mandatory Quality Indicator Program
Find out more about the National Aged Care Mandatory Quality Indicator Program. Learn what the quality indicators are and how the program works.
About the program
The National Aged Care Mandatory Quality Indicator Program (QI Program) started on 1 July 2019.
The program collects quality indicator data from residential aged care services every 3 months. Over time, this data will provide an evidence base that can be used to improve the quality of services provided to care recipients.
The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) publish quarterly quality indicator data, de-identified by provider, at a national, state and territory level on the GEN Aged Care Data website.
What are the quality indicators
Every service must report against 3 quality indicators for each care recipient:
- pressure injuries
- use of physical restraint
- unplanned weight loss.
From 1 July 2021, there will be additional quality indicators services must report against:
- falls and major injury
- medication management.
Why it is important
Quality indicators measure important aspects of quality of care that can affect a care recipient’s health and wellbeing.
The program helps:
- aged care service providers to measure, monitor, compare and improve the quality of their services
- provide older people with more information about the quality of aged care services when making choices about their care.
How the program works
Who must report quality indicator data?
Approved providers of government-subsidised residential aged care services must submit quality indicator data.
You must submit data for each residential aged care service, even if you’re part of a larger provider group.
The following services are excluded and do not need to report data:
Understanding the quality indicators
To make sure the data is consistent, providers must report data in the same way. Read our manual and guides so you understand how to assess and record quality indicator data.
This manual is for government-subsidised residential aged care providers. It includes the definitions for each quality indicator and describes how to collect and submit your quality indicator data. A final draft of the new manual is available now and will be updated before 1 July 2021.
These guides are for government-subsidised residential aged care providers. They provide advice on how to assess residents for pressure injuries, how to count the use of physical restraint, and how to record unplanned weight loss. They also include examples of how you can record the data.
Submitting the data
Submit your data through the My Aged Care provider portal.
If you’re not sure, read our quick reference guides on how to:
- activate your quality indicators tile
- access and use the quality indicators application
- access the quality indicators reports.
A commercial benchmarking company can submit quality indicator data on your behalf. You’re responsible for making sure they submit by the deadline as required by law.
New quality indicators from 1 July 2021
First quarter QI Program data collection for the new quality indicators starts from 1 July 2021. Data for this quarter is reported in the 1 to 21 October 2021 reporting period.
The QI Program includes the following quality indicators as detailed in the National Aged Care Mandatory Quality Indicator Program Manual – 2.0 – Part A – Final draft:
Percentage of care recipients with pressure injuries, reported against 6 pressure injury stages
Percentage of care recipients who were physically restrained
Unplanned weight loss
Percentage of care recipients who experienced significant unplanned weight loss (5% or more)
Percentage of care recipients who experienced consecutive unplanned weight loss
Falls and major injury
Percentage of care recipients who experienced one or more falls
Percentage of care recipients who experienced one or more falls resulting in major injury
Percentage of care recipients who were prescribed 9 or more medications
Percentage of care recipients who received antipsychotic medications
This summary is for government-subsidised residential aged care providers. It provides a summary of data elements for each QI Program quality indicator from 1 July 2021.
Developing the program
As part of the 2019–20 Budget Measure More Choices for a Longer Life – Mandatory National Quality Indicators and Reducing the Misuse of Medicines in Residential Aged Care, we have developed new quality indicators relating to medication management and falls and major injury, as well as updated the pressure injuries, physical restraint and unplanned weight loss quality indicators.
The process of developing the new quality indicators, and reviewing the existing quality indicators, included:
- an evidence-based literature review
- national face-to-face and written consultations with the aged care sector
- expert consultations
- trial in residential aged care services.
The Development of Aged Care Quality Indicators - Summary Report, (June 2020), outlines the extensive work undertaken to develop the new and updated quality indicators, to be included in the QI Program from 1 July 2021.
Previous work undertaken to develop the quality indicators and the QI Program is outlined in the following reports:
- National Aged Care Quality Indicator Program - Consumer Experience and Quality of Life Pilot Outcomes for Residential Care (March 2017)
- National Aged Care Quality Indicator Program – Consumer Experience and Quality of Life Pilot Outcomes for Home Care (March 2017)
- National Aged Care Quality Indicator Program - Residential Care Pilot Outcomes (March 2016)
The Aged Care Legislation Amendment (Quality Indicator Program) Principles 2019 took effect on 1 July 2019.
This amendment updated the following principles under the Aged Care Act 1997 to make the program mandatory:
- For Residential Aged Care Providers – webinar on quality indicators
- For Residential Aged Care Providers – Frequently Asked Questions
- For GPs – Quality Indicators in Residential Aged Care
- For Clinical and Care Teams – Quality Indicators in Residential Aged Care
- For Board Directors and Executives – Quality Indicators in Residential Aged Care
- For Care Recipients and Families – Quality Indicators in Residential Aged Care
My Aged Care service provider and assessor helpline
This helpline is for government-subsidised aged care service providers and assessors. It can help you with the provider and assessor portals and the National Aged Care Mandatory Quality Indicator Program. Call from 8am to 8pm Monday to Friday or 10am to 2pm Saturday.