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Three Generations of Care

2 December 2013

Three Generations of Care

Three Generations of Care

Situated in the heart of Cowes, Banfields Aged Care is a brand new, world-class residential aged care facility with a special Open Day taking place on Saturday, 26 October between 10am and 2pm to show off its hotel-style amenities.

A lot of Phillip Island residents will have fond recollections of Banfields’ history as a former cinema, restaurant and motel complex but its transformation into a state-of-the-art Aged Care facility has been created from a history all of its own.

Banfields Aged Care

has been born from three generations of experience of the Matthies family who have been involved in aged care since the 1960s.

First generation, Keith and Betty Matthies, have been acknowledged by the Aged Care industry as being amongst its earliest innovators and instrumental in guiding the industry to where it stands today.

They were one of the first aged care providers to build and operate new purpose-built facilities in Melbourne in the 1970s and early 1980s. They were also the founders and operators of Canterbury Nursing Home from 1966 through to their eventual retirement in the mid-2000s.

As a result of growing up in this environment, Keith and Betty’s son, John Matthies (Managing Director of Australian Aged Care Group Pty Ltd) has had a life-long involvement in the industry both as an operator and lawyer. John was keen to perpetuate his parents’ legacy and spent several years looking for the perfect location to build a top tier facility that would meet all the needs and expectations of the growing baby boomers market, of which he is one, as well as people from his parents’ generation.

In 2005 John was fortunate to locate a suitable site in Gellibrand Street in Kew and no expense was spared building Kew Gardens Aged Care where both of his parents, Keith and Betty now reside. The facility includes a cinema, café, bar, BBQ courtyard private dining room with sitting and dining rooms overlooking Alexandra Gardens. Yet it still retains a homelike appearance and ambience that has resulted in Kew Gardens being acknowledged as the benchmark facility of the Aged Care Industry.

As his second development, John has built Banfields Aged Care to meet the same exceptionally high standards created by Kew Gardens. The single level facility features luxurious amenities and provides care to 90 residents, catering for both low care and high care needs with ageing in place programs. The facility also offers dementia specific care in a dedicated 14 bed dementia specific wing. The spacious and elegant facility consists of six separate wings, adjoining central lounges, café, bar, cinema, chapel and reception centre providing an extensive range of services to assist residents in remaining active and engaged.

“Our facilities are a lot more user-friendly, some people would say luxurious,” John says, explaining what sets his facilities apart from everything else currently offered on the market. “We’ve endeavoured to provide a hotel-style level of services and care.”

In particular, both Banfields and Kew Gardens are distinguished by the quality of their rooms. Whereas most aged care facilities will simply offer a bedroom, both facilities focus on providing suites – rooms with a bedroom, ensuite bathroom, sitting room and kitchenette. “It just makes it a bit more home-like,” John explains.

Now entering into a third generation, John is joined by his children, Jennifer and Edward, who have moved into administrator positions within the company and bring with them a contemporary focus with further dynamic initiatives for maintaining a superior level of aged care service.

In the years to come, as the number of elderly increase, Matthies says his team of aged care professionals is well positioned to capatilise on the growing market trend with two more new facilities on the drawing board located in South Yarra and Canterbury. “Most of those people will be baby boomer generation types who have much higher expectations of the type of facility and the standard of care that they want,” John says.

Taking into account this impressive family history, the company motto of “Exceptional Care Built on Solid Foundations” could be seen as constantly evolving, still building from a shared vision of three generations of progressive aged care providers.

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