New Aged Care package delivers for Fairfax seniors

The Morrison Government is delivering for senior Australians through a $537 million funding investment, responding to the three priority areas identified in the Aged Care Royal Commission Interim Report.

Member for Fairfax Ted O’Brien welcomed the major funding boost, which will deliver 10,000 new home care packages; improve medication management for aged care residents with dementia and facilitate getting younger people out of residential aged care.

“The Sunshine Coast has one of the highest concentrations of older Australians than anywhere else in the country, with over 20 per cent aged over 65,” Mr O’Brien said.

“So I’m very pleased our Government is providing more support in the three priority areas identified by the Aged Care Royal Commission,” he said.

“Delivering quality aged care is paramount for the people of Fairfax.

“Families want to know that their loved ones will be treated with dignity and respect when they need care and I am committed to delivering that for the people in my local area.”

The Government’s funding package includes the following measures;

  • investing $496.3 million for an additional 10,000 home care packages;
  • providing $25.5 million to improve medication management programs to reduce the use of medication as a chemical restraint on aged care residents and at home, and new restrictions and education for prescribers on the use of medication as a chemical restraint;
  • delivering $10 million for additional dementia training and support for aged care workers and providers, including to reduce the use of chemical restraint; and
  • investing $4.7 million to help meet new targets to remove younger people with disabilities from residential aged care.

Many of the findings of the Aged Care Royal Commission Interim Report have reflected Mr O’Brien’s own submission to the Commission which was drafted after a series of community workshops throughout Fairfax, and meetings with the Fairfax Seniors Advisory Committee.

His submission highlighted the long waiting lists for home care packages, the fear that people have of being placed in residential facilities while they wait for the these packages, and poor transitioning from their home into aged care.

“This funding will greatly help seniors to independently live in their own home for longer,” Mr O’Brien said.

“And it will also strongly support the reduction of the use of medication as a restraint method, and it will greatly assist in getting our young people with disabilities out of residential aged care.

Mr O’Brien said Australians needed to undergo a “cultural shift” in the way we treat our elderly.

“We need to build a culture of respect for our ageing and older Australians and they should have access to care that supports their dignity, and recognises the contribution they have made to our society.

“This $537 million funding investment will certainly contribute to ensuring our aged care system meets the needs of our seniors and weeds out substandard care wherever it is found.”

Full details of the Government’s Aged Care Royal Commission Interim Report response package is available here: https://www.pm.gov.au/media/response-aged-care-royal-commission-interim-report