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.

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.

National Aged Care Mandatory Quality Indicator Program Manual

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.

National Aged Care Mandatory Quality Indicator Program quick reference guides

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:

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:

Quality Indicator

Categories

Pressure injuries

Percentage of care recipients with pressure injuries, reported against 6 pressure injury stages

Physical restraint

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

Medication management

Percentage of care recipients who were prescribed 9 or more medications

Percentage of care recipients who received antipsychotic medications

QI Program data elements summary

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:

Legislation

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: 

Resources

Contact

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.

View contact

Last updated: 
30 April 2021