Principal Researcher, Research Matters; Director, Aged Care Matters and Co-Founder, Aged Care Reform Now
Dr Sarah Russell trained as a critical care nurse before completing a Bachelor of Arts and a PhD at the University of Melbourne. She has been the Principal Researcher at Research Matters since 1999. She is also the Director of Aged Care Matters and the co-founder of Aged Care Reform Now.
Sarah became interested in aged care when her parents moved into an aged care home. After her father died, she stopped full-time work so she could spend as much time with her mum as possible. She wanted her mum’s quality of life to be as good as it could be. She wanted her mum to feel valued and be engaged in her ‘twilight years’. The time Sarah spent with her mum in the aged care home was precious for them both. Sarah enjoyed the four years she spent with residents, families, and staff, and watched the comings and goings at Victoria By The Park with a critical eye.
Sarah’s opinion pieces and letters on aged care have been published in The Age, The Guardian, Herald Sun, Michael West Media, to name a few. Sarah has also discussed aged care on television programs including The Project, 7.30, ABC News Breakfast, Afternoon Briefing, Today, and Sunrise. She is also frequently interviewed on ABC radio.
Sarah has undertaken several research projects on aged care. Her home care research, commissioned by the Minister for Aged Care, was published in a peer-reviewed journal, Australasian Journal on Ageing.
Sarah believes the aged care system requires greater scrutiny, accountability, and transparency. She advocates for an aged care system that is focused on the human rights of older people.