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National Research and Innovation Centre opens
Posted by on November 21, 2013


Snowy, the robotic seal that is being trialled in SCC respite centres

The Southern Cross Care (SCC) Research and Innovation Centre (RIC) was officially opened in Adelaide in September. The focus of the new centre is to be able to translate research into on-the-ground practice for the real and direct benefit of older people.

SCC Western Australia and Queensland are joint partners in the Centre, with some additional support also coming from Broken Hill and Tasmania. One area of focus for the RIC is to look at innovative approaches to long term dementia care, with the aim of assessing their usefulness within our person-centred care approach.

Research projects include:

Humour therapy Teamed with the Arts Health Institute based in NSW, SCC is the first aged care provider in South Australia to bring the humour therapy program ‘Play Up’ to several  of its facilities. A trained humour therapist works with and trains SCC staff to use humour to increase fun in the daily life of residents and staff. One study has shown that humour therapy can be as effective as medication in reducing agitation in some residents as well as decreasing depression and social isolation.

Supportive Behavioural Therapies

‘Paro’ is a robotic seal that was first sourced at the Alzheimer’s Australia Conference. Trial clinical studies have shown positive effects on increasing social interaction, and reducing loneliness, agitation and quality of life in people with dementia. Paro (now called Snowy) is currently being trialled in SCC respite centres.

Creative reminiscence

SCC have partnered with Tutti an arts organisation, to trial Creative Reminiscence at one of our residential facilities in Adelaide. This project utilises reminiscence and the arts combined to reduce social isolation within residential aged care. This may include using storytelling, painting, poetry or any other artistic means that is relevant to the individual or group.


Posted by Char Weeks on
This note is to alert you to the call for abstracts for Respecting Our Loved One's Wishes: Innovations in the Delivery of Home and Community Care for Older People.

Download the guidelines at
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