After hours aged care toolkit

After hours toolkit guide for residential aged care homes

Murray PHN is supporting the Australian Government’s response to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, including raising awareness about after hours services that can help to reduce hospital presentations for residents at night and on weekends.

A toolkit has been created as an instructional guide to help explain the importance of after hours action planning, where to find useful resources (listed below), and how to use and keep these up-to-date. It encourages procedures and supports engagement between staff, GPs and other health professionals.

Important note - the resources and plans should be regularly revised and updated to reflect policies and procedures, available services and changes in care.

After hours action planning tool

The after hours action planning tool enables RACHs to self-assess their current after hours preparedness, identify gaps in after hours capabilities, and identify which resources, processes and procedures could be adopted to improve access to appropriate medical care for residents.

Use this tool to assess the status of your RACH’s after hours preparedness. It contains links to other helpful after hours resources.

Click here to access.

Medical support checklist

The medical support checklist tool is based on the ISBAR communication tool, to aid staff when a resident is unwell and support is required.

To use it, complete the form and contact any service where you need to provide information on a patient’s condition, such as a GP, locum service or the Victorian Virtual Emergency Department (VVED).

For more information on examples of low to medium acuity conditions referred to in this resource, please visit Medical referral options for residents in aged care homes

It can be printed as an A4 notepad or used digitally and distributed to all nursing stations. A printed A4 notepad version is available from Murray PHN on request.

If there is a clinical symptom a resident presents and you do not know which service to contact, call your Registered Nurse or NURSE-ON-CALL (1300 60 60 24) to confirm.

Click here to access.

Family fact sheet

The family fact sheet informs family members and carers of RACH residents about what happens if someone falls ill at night, or on the weekend and what families can do to help.

The fact sheet is also available in Vietnamese, Chinese - traditional and simplified, Italian, Arabic, Greek, Punjabi, Turkish, Maltese and Hindi languages.

Click here to access.

Service directory

The service directory assists staff to identify local services available in the after hours period. It has two components:

  • A locum or deputising and pharmacy service directory in which to list relevant services and contact details
  • A standardised after hours service directory detailing residential in-reach services (by postcode), Victorian Virtual Emergency Department contact details and broader services.

Keeping them updated and available to all staff is essential.

These can be accessed in portrait and landscape word documents (last updated 13/12/2023).

Person-centred after hours action plan

The Person-centred after hours action plan enables staff to summarise key information explaining a resident’s after hours care plans, for quick and simple reference during an emergency.

The plan should be placed where staff can easily access it at all times, while also respecting the resident’s right to privacy. It should be regularly reviewed and updated.

Click here to access.

Contact us

For more information or support contact Murray PHN's Aged Care Digital Health Care team:


Page last updated 26 March 2024