Adjust the ACFI scale

A senior industry figure wants the government to change the definitions of high and low care under the new funding instrument to increase capital flows.

The national president of Aged and Community Services Australia (ACSA) says the Aged Care Funding Instrument (ACFI) has limited the number of bonds that providers can charge.

Klaus Zimmerman said that because only 12 of the 64 ‘pay points’ under the ACFI are classified as low care, construction in the industry is stalling.

“What the government has done is got the ACFI scale wrong in terms of classifying low care and high care,” he said.

To rectify the industry’s capital shortfall, Mr Zimmerman is calling on the government to change the definitions of high and low care.

“What we are asking for is an adjustment of the ACFI scale so that only the top 12 pay points are classified as high care,” Mr Zimmerman.

“We believe that the remaining 52 pay points are really medium-high care or low care and should be able to attract bonds.

“That way, the government can stick to its principle of no bonds in high care but still address the underlying concerns of providers.”

At a time when the government is looking for ways to stimulate the economy, Mr Zimmerman said such would a move would immediately inject around $2 billion into aged care construction.

“They can go some way to boosting the economy at no cost to themselves just by a shift of the pen,” he said.

“If they changed the ACFI scale around to allow more bonds to flow into the aged care industry, it would stimulate construction greatly.”

Tags: bonds,

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