Boomers see nursing homes as a last resort

A Galaxy poll shows that Australians aged 50 and over do not want to end up in a nursing home and they are putting off decisions about their future as a result.

More evidence that middle-aged and older Australians view nursing homes as a last resort has emerged in a Galaxy poll, conducted on behalf of the Benevolent Society in NSW.

About three quarters of the 1000 survey participants aged 50 and over, said they would only move into a nursing home if they had no other choice.

The trend was strongest among baby boomers, with those aged 50-59 less likely to want to move into an aged care facility.

Interestingly, people who had worked in aged care were more negatively disposed to entering a nursing home than those who had not.

The survey’s findings suggest that most baby boomers are also putting off important decisions about their futures because they do not want to think about moving into a nursing home.

“These preferences are solid and widespread and send a strong message to governments and to the aged care, retirement and housing industries about what older Australians will be demanding over the next 10 to 15 years,” said the Benevolent Society’s CEO, Richard Spencer.

“They place great store in the need for living independently as long as possible, in having easy access to health care services, and in staying in their neighbourhood of choice and being close to loved ones,” Mr Spencer said.

Survey participants from all demographic groups felt that the government should play a substantial role in providing funding for alternative models and adequate care provision as the population continues to age.

Seventy-eight per cent said the government must start to budget now for the blow-out in aged care costs that is expected over the next 10-15 years.

The Benevolent Society is currently awaiting development approval for a new type of seniors living development in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, based on the ‘Apartments for Life’ model developed in the Netherlands.

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