The aged care royal commission has heard evidence from its first witnesses, with calls by whistleblowers for a national database identifying rogue workers and concerns raised over an “unintentionally complex” aged care system.
The federal government has announced an additional 10,000 home care packages as part of a $662 million commitment to aged care.
The nation’s leading consumer representatives will comprise the first witnesses at the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety when hearings get underway next week.
The first 350 of 775 new restorative care places announced in last year’s budget will be allocated by July, the federal government says, with the remainder to come online in the next financial year.
The government will review whether it is necessary to tighten registration requirements for home care providers following allegations of price-gouging, non-compliance with standards and pushy sales techniques.
Seven home care providers and more than 100 clients are piloting a “radical” self-management model which includes direct online access to financial information, hands-on involvement in sourcing care staff, the use of a home care debit card and access to a self-management consultant.
COTA has conducted a wide-ranging survey of of 2,560 Australians which found, among other things, that while people have difficulty getting home care, most are satisfied once they have it.
As Australia’s aged care sector straps itself in for an 18-month royal commission, providers have pledged to co-operate “fully and transparently to achieve the outcomes we all want”.
The complex ethical, legal and privacy issues surrounding the use of CCTV cameras in aged care residents’ rooms need to be carefully teased out after a Four Corners investigation showed footage of an elderly resident being assaulted by a care worker, Australia’s aged consumer group says.
The creation of a social change campaign to promote a workforce that currently feels “persecuted and undervalued” is among the recommendations of a key aged care workforce report released by the federal government.
Minister for Aged Care Ken Wyatt speaks to Community Care Review in his first comments directly addressing reaction to the government’s home care data released last week, revealing that more than one in ten approved for a package are estimated to be living with dementia.
The nation’s peak advocacy group for older people has called for a three-month waiting time target for home care packages, saying the latest data shows Australians are “crying out for home care support”.
The latest government figures show the number of people waiting for a home care package has increased to more than 108,000.
State and territory advocacy organisations are set to benefit from $2 million of federal funds to help combat elder abuse.