The current aged care funding model remains under significant strain, with more than 45 per cent of residential aged care facilities operating at a loss, according to StewartBrown’s quarterly benchmarking report.
The figure is slightly up from 42.3 per cent in the December 2018 quarter, but on par with the findings for March 2018 (45.1 per cent).
Sixty-seven per cent of services in outer regional, rural and remote areas are operating at a loss, up from 61 per cent the previous quarter. More than 43 per cent of facilities in these geographic areas are operating at a cash deficiency.
The StewartBrown March 2019 Aged Care Financial Performance Survey includes data from 183 approved provider organisations, 952 residential aged care facilities and 26,180 home care packages across Australia.
The survey also found that 19.8 per cent of aged care facilities made a cash loss (negative EBITDAR), compared to 19.5 per cent the previous quarter and the as a year ago at June 2018.
StewartBrown says the results point to a declining financial performance in both residential aged care and home care.
“While there have been seasonal improvements in results since FY18, the underlying year on-year results of both residential care and home care indicates declining financial performance,” StewartBrown said in the report.
The report says overall funding arrangements in aged care require considerable adjustment.
“Residential aged care is under-funded, both from a government and consumer perspective.
“Consumers should be provided with more education and related data to understand the real costs of providing aged care services, including the cost of accommodation for residential aged care, and accordingly, the requirement that consumers co-contribute to the cost of care delivery where financially able to,” the report said.
Other findings in the report include:
- an operating profit (EBT) of $1.65 per bed day for the survey average, down from $2.79 the year before
- an operating profit (EBT) of $29.78 per bed day for the first 25 per cent, down from $33.17 the year before
- a cash profit (EBITDAR) of $6,873 per bed per annum for the survey average, slightly down from $6,884 the year before
- a cash profit (EBITDAR) of $16,507 per bed per annum for the first 25 per cent, down from $17,574 the year before
- average aged care funding instrument and supplements per bed day (pbd) has increased by 3.4 per cent to $178.37 pbd from $172.54 pbd the year before
- average occupancy levels for survey participants marginally increased at 94.96 per cent from 94.06 per cent the year before.
- total care hours per resident per day were 3.14 hours, up from 0.03 hours from the year before
- direct care costs increased by 4.8 per cent to $146.24 pbd from the year before
- costs for providing everyday loving services exceeded contribution revenue by $7.73 pbd.
Access the report here.
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