Health department’s aged care website wins Good Design Award

By Shannon Jenkins

Wednesday September 9, 2020


The federal government’s online platform for connecting older Australians to government-funded aged care services has been named Australia’s best-designed website.

My Aged Care took home the prize at the Good Design Awards on Wednesday.

The website is the result of a collaborative effort between the Department of Health, digital experience agency Liquid Interactive, and hundreds of older Australians and their families.

It offers an online experience that’s simple, supportive, intuitive and empowering, according to Liquid Interactive customer experience director Fiona Armstrong.

“Listening to older Australians and their families we understood why the fear of losing your independence was driving people to struggle independently for as long as possible rather than reach out for support,” she says.

“We could see the pressure and anxiety families feel when events force them to take action. And how a lack of awareness about the options available and complex systems made it all too difficult.

“We painstakingly worked with Australians from rural and urban areas, with diverse needs, backgrounds and abilities to design new solutions. Solutions that gave them confidence to make decisions about their care and let them maintain their health and independence for longer.”

The Good Design Award judges have described the website as a “great example of the use of human-centred design to make a complex domain more accessible to people”.

“With our ageing population, this website is ideally placed to be solving several problems,” they say.

A redesign of the website commenced in 2018 as part of Health’s broader aged care reform program. Armstrong says the website’s new “apply online” service — which allows individuals to check if an older Australian is eligible for aged care before applying online — is an example of what a government service experience should look like.

“We’ve taken a complex set of processes that required assistance from a GP or contact centre advisor, and co-designed a new fully digital service that’s really easy for anyone to use. It’s easier and customers love the new service,” she says.

The website won the Digital Transformation Agency’s Australian Government Digital Awards for Outstanding Digital Service in 2019. Health and Liquid Interactive also won an Australian Good Design Award in 2019 for their digital mental health gateway, Head to Health.

Read more: Government’s mental health website wins Australian Good Design Award

Among the many winners of the 2020 Good Design Awards, some of the public sector organisations which have been recognised for their work includes:

  • The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and Meld Studios for Delivering Great Policy — a cross-agency initiative to improve policy advice by lifting policy capability across the Australian Public Service,
  • The ACT government’s Family Safety Hub and Future Friendly (formally Mentally Friendly), for lowering barriers to access by redesigning financial abuse services,
  • The Level Crossing Removal Authority and Genton, for Frankston Station,
  • The Victorian Ombudsman and Today, for delivering the agency’s redesigned digital service,
  • Magistrate’s Court of Victoria and Today, for Australia’s first online Family Violence Intervention Order Form,
  • Today and the Office of the Children’s Guardian, for creating better access to working with children checks for Indigenous Australians,
  • The Australian National Maritime Museum and Frost*collective, for the MuSEAum branding,
  • NSW Rural Fire Service and Arq Group, for the Fires Near Me app,
  • The Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications, Tigerspike and Concentrix, for the National Relay Service,
  • Yarra Valley Water for reimagining Water Main Renewals,
  • The Australian Taxation Office for improving digital services for tax professionals,
  • The NSW Department of Education and Future Friendly, for “transforming the form” and enabling a better transition to school,
  • The NSW Department of Education and Future Friendly, for designing systems and teams for a better experience for schools.

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