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Extension to Royal Commission and extra home care packages both necessary

Release date: 08 Jul 2020

The peak body for non-profit aged care providers Aged and Community Services Australia (ACSA) has welcomed the announcement of new home care packages and says the extension to the Royal Commission is necessary.

“There simply hasn’t been the time or capacity to properly investigate the solutions to the reform challenges that aged care faces,” ACSA CEO Patricia Sparrow said. 

“We must properly investigate the reforms needed to ensure aged care is delivering the care and support older Australians need, including how we will pay for this as a community.

“Whatever funding model we end up with, it needs to be based on what older people need. We’ve only just been asked for input on funding models, so the extension is very welcome and a serious conversation is overdue.

“But none of this means that urgent action isn’t required. We’re yet to see a full response to the sector’s united call for a COVID-19 response package and the fact that 60 per cent of all residential care facilities are operating at a loss.

“On top of this, protecting vulnerable older Australians during the pandemic has led to significant cost increases. For some providers the additional spending on cleaning, PPE and staff has been estimated at as much as $1 million.

“With more than 100,000 people still waiting, the injection of another 6,105 home care packages is fantastic. It also shows the government is aware that home care is one of the major issues to address for the future of the entire system. 

“We need to make sure we have enough services available to meet the needs of older people who want to stay in their own home for as long as possible.

“We’re hopeful that this extension will be the start of a serious community-wide conversation about how to pay for the aged care older Australians deserve,” Ms Sparrow.

Media contact: Patrick Molan 0418 173 201

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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