Australia Needs More "Heart Skills": Aged Care Professionals Set To Be In High Demand

Release date: 12 Jun 2019

Aged & Community Services Australia (ACSA) says Deloitte Access Economic report released today, The path to prosperity: Why the future of work is human, shows Australia faces a caring professions skills shortage. The Report dispels commonly held myths that the future workforce in Australia will be solely about automation and technology-driven.

“This Report finds ‘skills of the heart’ will those most in demand in the future,” said Patricia Sparrow, CEO of ACSA.

“Aged care professionals are too often undervalued. However, Deloitte’s report shows two-thirds of jobs created by 2030 will be ‘soft-skill intensive,’ meaning they will require the caring skills that aged carers already have – the ability to show empathy and understand and respond to human needs.

“We are hopeful that recommendations arising from the Royal Commission into Aged Care will recognise the importance of workforce planning and development at national, regional and local level driven by the sector and stakeholders.

“ACSA members know the only way to meet growing skills shortages in caring professions is by attracting and retaining skilled employees. That means funding certainty for aged care providers and wages that reflect that value aged care professionals deliver for our economy and communities.

“We know that we need to adopt technology and digital health tools to future-proof aged care. Aged care of the future will be both hi tech and hi touch. We also need staff with caring skills who are able to use these tools. This report looks at 35 skills and finds 89 percent of ‘heart’ based skills are in shortage.

“All of us are living longer, and all of us deserve the highest possible quality of care as we age. That will require us all to place new value on the importance of vital caring skills.

“Aged care professionals do heart-driven work. Deloitte’s report shows care workers have the skills that will be in highest demand as we head into the next decade,” said Ms Sparrow.

Media contact: Aliya Ahmad 0428 684 307

As the peak body representing church, charitable and community-based organisations providing accommodation and care services to older people, people with a disability and their carers, ACSA can be contacted for comment on issues affecting the industry.

Areas ACSA may provide media commentary on include:  

  • Aged care reforms
  • Residential aged care
  • Home care
  • Independent and retirement living
  • Housing for older Australians
  • Palliative care
  • The aged care workforce in Australia


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