Productivity Commission report highlights the need for ambitious government action on aged care

Release date: 23 Jan 2020

The peak body for non-profit aged care providers Aged and Community Services (ACSA) has welcomed a report from the Productivity Commission that highlights the need for urgent and ambitious reform to better support older Australians in care.

ACSA CEO Patricia Sparrow said the industry had welcomed increased transparency and improved standards but also warned they must be met with increased resources and support in order for them to be fully realised.

“The ambitious reforms we are hoping will come from the Royal Commission can’t come soon enough. Waiting lists and times are clearly unacceptable and some providers, in particular those in regional and remote areas, are struggling to survive with costs to deliver care outstripping funding”, Ms Sparrow said.

“The new data is welcome because it shows individuals are being empowered to demand better care. While the industry is adapting, it will never be fast enough until we see increased support and ambitious reforms.

“It is important that we recognise structural problems and funding challenges make this transition more complex than simply needing to crack down on providers.

“Recent changes which focus more on the individual were an important step forward in how we deliver quality care to older Australians. We fully engaged in the consultation process to develop the standards and have been working very hard to see them realised.

“We’re not here to complain about regulation or make excuses. We will own up to mistakes when they occur, address them to ensure they don’t happen again and put forward positive solutions.

“The community can have confidence that aged care providers are working hard to see these changes through. The report today shows that an overwhelming majority of providers are meeting all of the new standards and that we will continue to see improvements.

“Aged care providers are also encouraging Australians to start planning for their post-retirement years as our population continues to age. We want everyone to start having those conversations and making plans much earlier so the system can be better prepared.”


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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