Minister for Ageing, Mrs Justine Elliot said she was committed to working in partnership with the aged care industry, unions and staff to improve the protection of the 170,000 older Australians living in Australia’s almost 3,000 aged care homes.
“My main priority is to protect our older Australians and I make no apologies for taking tough action,” Mrs Elliot said.
“The vast majority of nursing homes have dedicated and hard working staff committed to improving the safety and quality of residents in aged care homes – I want to work in partnership with them.
”Mrs Elliot’s remarks follow the release of the annual report into the Operation of the Aged Care Act, which was tabled in Federal Parliament yesterday (November 25).Section 63-2 of the Aged Care Act requires the Minister to present the annual report to Parliament by November 30.
The Australian Government has introduced a number of measures to improve the care and protection of frail and aged Australians. They include:
- An extension of compulsory police checks for all staff working in Australia’s aged care homes -supervised and unsupervised. (This will be implemented by changes to delegated legislation from 1 January 2009 which follow passage of amendments to the Aged Care Act by the House of Representatives last night (November 25). It is now before the Senate.)
An increase in the number of nursing homes visits by Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency to 7,000 visits including 3,000 unannounced ones;
- Record funding into aged and community care – with more than $41.6 billion being invested by the Rudd Labor Government over the next four years. (On average, over the next four years, the Federal Government will provide up to $41,500 a year for every nursing resident in Australia.)
- A number of training/employment initiatives to improve and up skill the quality of nurses and personal care workers in nursing homes; and
The Department of Health and Ageing’s Complaints Investigation Scheme - 1-800- 550- 552
SOURCE: Dept. of Health and Ageing (Australia)
Click for Updates, More Cases and Resources