Australian PM pledges overhaul of "besieged" aged care system

03 Mars, 2021, 08:44 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • The rallies follow the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety

The aged care system must enter a "new paradigm" where residents are treated based on individual needs, he said.

The Federal government will inject $425million to try address the chronic problems in Australia's aged care sector after the final recommendations of the Royal Commission into the sector were handed to the Governor-General, David Hurley.

"Australians must be able to trust that their loved ones will be cared for appropriately and the community should have confidence in the system".

The report recommends a five-year timeframe to implement the measures set out in the document, measures that include increased transparency on fees, further protection against physical and chemical restraints, and better protection against mistreatment and neglect in residential and home care.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has committed to a "generational" overhaul of the country's aged care system after a scathing review.

Commissioners Tony Pagone QC and Lynelle Briggs wrote in the final report the current aged care system and its "weak and ineffective regulatory arrangements did not arise by accident". This remains our clear goal.

These immediate steps will drive improved quality of care by strengthening aged care provider governance, and improved oversight of home care which will ensure senior Australians and taxpayers are getting value for money.

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Almost $190 million will go to residential care providers and $90 million to create a fund to help facilities facing financial challenges. We responded quickly to the Royal Commission's interim report and its special report on COVID-19, with additional investments in the priority areas identified by the Royal Commission.

Among recommendations, the report calls for home care packages to be approved within a month of assessment and for staff to receive a minimum amount of training, like in childcare. In the quality and safety of residential care, Hunt said the government will "commence the process of 1,500 extra audits of facilities per year under the aged care quality and safety commissioner".

"Funding is what supports the employment of more care staff, better trained care staff, better paid care staff and better facilities for residents".

The report contains 148 recommendations for sector reform.

In response to the Royal Commission, the Government will immediately invest $30.1 million to strengthen the governance of aged care providers and legislative governance obligations on the sector. Careful consideration will be given to the Royal Commission report and the Government will outline the path to transform aged care in the Budget. That their dignity, that their care, that their respect for them as a human being and a fellow Australian has to sit at the centre.

The report authors, Commissioner Tony Pagone and Commissioner Lynelle Briggs differ on many important issues, which makes any direction for the Federal Government hard.

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