Upgrades help keep residents local, says CEO

Helping Hand has received over $17 million in federal funding to improve and expand its aged care homes in Whyalla.

South Australian provider Helping Hand has secured over $17 million in federal funding to improve and expand its aged care homes in Whyalla.

The plans include upgrading all shared rooms to individual rooms with private bathrooms and 12 additional rooms at Yeltana Residential Care and improved amenities and an six rooms at Copperhouse Court home.

Announced on Thursday, the $17.2 million funding boost means more Whyalla residents will be able to access quality care locally and spend their final years close to their family and community, said Helping Hand Chief executive officer Chris Stewart.

Chris Stewart

“The investment will allow us to expand our services to make sure no one has to leave in order to get the care they need,” he said.

At Yeltana Care Home, improvements also include a new dining area and multi-purpose activity space, upgraded electrical systems and improved back of house entry and external areas.

The upgrades at Copperhouse Court also include a flexible multi-purpose space for activities, upgraded electrical systems like nurse call and security and landscaped and sheltered external areas.

Mr Stewart said funding was necessary to meet the costs of redeveloping facilities to meet modern day standards and expectations.

“The traditional hostel model of aged care, with share rooms and amenities does not deliver on dignity, safety and privacy. Rightfully, residents expect to be able to move into a private room with a private ensuite, which is why funding like this is crucial.”

And older people also want to stay in their own communities, said Minister for Aged Care Anika Wells.

“When the time comes, older people in Whyalla want to access aged care services in the community they know and love and be close to their families and cultural connections. This funding will support that to happen,” she said.

The government is providing more than $600 million in grant funding to support building and upgrading aged care services for First Nations, regional, rural and remote communities.

“Our investment directly supports aged care providers operating outside the major cities to build, modernise and improve their services so older people in Australia can have access to better quality aged care services where they need them,” Ms Wells said.

Helping Hand’s Yeltana aged care home

Helping Hand acquired the Whyalla homes from Kindred Living in November 2022 along with 11 retirement living units and homes care services to assist older and vulnerable people to remain living in their community as they aged. A year later it announced a 10-year vision that included plans to create a positive ageing precinct with a new retirement village, family housing to help attract workforce, a wellness community hub and other community services.

This week’s funding boost is a welcome addition to the provider’s plan to improve services for the community, said Mr Stewart.

“We’re delighted that we have been able to secure this funding to develop and enhance the aged care services available to regional South Australians.”

Have we missed an expansion or opening? Send us the details and an image to editorial@australianageingagenda.com.au

Tags: anika wells, chris stewart, funding, helping hand, refurbishment,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *