Call for immediate reform of aged care

Marnie Banger
(Australian Associated Press)

 

As the royal commission into Australia’s aged-care sector approaches, an advocacy group is urging the federal government to start reforms now.

Funding 30,000 more home-care packages in the government’s mid-year budget update or the 2019/20 budget is among five urgent changes the Council on the Ageing has recommended.

The group also wants the coalition to make all inspections of age-care providers unannounced and pass legislation by March 2018 ensuring aged-care packages are paid to older people, not providers.

Better transparency around aged-care services and staffing and more money to build up the capacity of the workforce are also suggested.

Chief executive Ian Yates says there’s nothing getting in the way of the coalition making the reforms, which had been sought for years.

“We are underlining things that there is no impediment for government acting on, except will and putting some money behind their support for quality aged care,” he told reporters in Canberra on Wednesday.

“We don’t want the momentum to slip.”

There have been no new announcements about funding for aged-care packages since the royal commission was ordered, Mr Yates noted, despite the number of people waiting them growing.

“I think we’ll find the queue continues to grow.”

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