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Monday, 24 November 1997
Page: 11061

Ms MACKLIN —My question is directed to the Minister for Family Services. Will a nursing home resident have to pay $4,380 every year they stay in the home? Is there a five-year limit which would mean a person would be up for almost $22,000 for their care on top of paying 85 per cent of their pension?

Mr WARWICK SMITH —The arrangements that I put in place on 6 November following the Prime Minister's announcements on accommodation bonds for entry to nursing homes continue in place. Those arrangements are known to the shadow minister and to members of this House. There is a $12 a day arrangement, payable in advance, which in total would amount to $4,380, which would be payable under arrangements for a five-year limit. That is the pre-existing arrangement and that continues. There is also the differential arrangement for assisted residents of $6 a day with about 27 per cent of beds provided to those who meet the concessional requirements and that continues.

These arrangements were endorsed initially by an all party working group of providers and consumer groups Thursday week ago. Again, on Friday there was a major meeting, that I arranged, to discuss these matters further with the industry and the consumer sector. All were in agreement that the arrangements that I have in place are appropriate.