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Government recruiting for aged care funding reform trial


The Department of Health is seeking residential aged care providers to trial a new assessment framework for residential aged care funding.

The trial aims to develop and test a model of external assessment for residential aged care funding and will involve between 5,000 and 10,000 aged care residents in metropolitan, regional and remote areas, who will be assessed using the Australian National Aged Care Classification (AN-ACC) tool.

The tool was developed by the University of Wollongong as part of the Resource Utilisation and Classification Study to replace the Aged Care Funding Instrument. The study reported its findings in a suite of seven reports that were released in March (read more here).

The subsequent public consultation paper received over 90 submissions, and several calls from experts and industry for transparency around the proposed funding model including the methodology behind it (read more here).

The department said the trial would not re-examine the findings of the University of Wollongong’s research that underpin the AN-ACC including the assessment tools, cost drivers of care, hours of care by class or the weighted ratios assigned to each class.

The government announced $4.6 million for the trial in February as part of a $662 million funding package for aged care (read more here).

It aims to:

  • field test the assessment tool, IT systems and hardware, support arrangements, and assessment workforce management; and
  • collect data to validate the findings about the expected distribution of care recipient classifications.

Participating providers will receive a summary overview of the AN-ACC classification profile for each participating facility.

The government will partner with an independent organisation or organisations to provide a workforce of assessors, such as registered nurses, occupational therapists and physiotherapists, to carry out the assessments.

Workforce processes, protocols and training will be tested and refined throughout the trial to ensure suitability for potential national implementation of the model.

The trial is scheduled to take place between late 2019 and early 2020.

Residential providers interested in joining the trial should submit an expression of interest including the name of the organisation, facility information and the details of a key contact to ResiFundingTrial@health.gov.au by 31 July 2019.

Information on the AN-ACC tool is available here and a details on trial are available here.

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