Significant reforms announced today will ensure senior residents on the southern Gold Coast will receive safe, quality aged care.
The Turnbull Government has announced reforms in aged care regulation, compliance, and complaints handling. These will be brought together under a new independent Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission.
Member for McPherson, Karen Andrews, has welcomed the reforms and said they will bring reassurance to the older residents of the Southern Gold Coast. They will ensure that everyone receiving aged care will all receive quality care.
“When I speak to people in the community the desire for reform in the aged care sector has been made very clear, and they have been urging the Government to make the hard decisions” said Mrs Andrews.
“This announcement is a significant reform in raising the bar on quality aged care, and sends a strong message to Australians that quality aged care is a top priority for the Turnbull Government.”
The reforms will include a new performance rating system to measure quality standards of aged care facilities. This will provide a comparison tool for residents seeking aged care providers and ensure senior Australians and their families have access to clear and concise information when choosing aged care options.
Minister for Aged Care, Ken Wyatt, said “The new independent Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission will give peace of mind to the 1.3 million Australians and their families currently in Commonwealth aged care support.
The establishment of the Commission is in response to the Carnell-Paterson review into failures at South Australia’s Oakden Older Persons Mental Health Service. The Review, commissioned by the Turnbull Government, found the current aged care regulatory framework does not adequately provide the assurance the community expects.
The new Commission will start from 1 January 2019 and will bring together the functions of the Australian Aged Care Quality Agency, the Aged Care Complaints Commissioner and the aged care regulatory functions of the Department of Health.
The reforms will include development options, in consultation with the aged care sector, for a Serious Incident Response Scheme to ensure the right systems are in place to identify an incident and prevent it from occurring again.
“We recognise that the vast majority of providers give consistent, quality care to their residents. But, as we have seen, there can be failures. We must ensure that disasters like Oakden are never repeated,” Minister Wyatt said.
“Our senior Australians built the nation that we enjoy today. They have rightly earned the respect of the community and must be cared for with the dignity they deserve.”