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220 new aged care places for Latrobe Valley

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January 3, 2012

An additional 171 high care and 50 low aged care places have been allocated to the Latrobe Valley in the latest Aged Care Approvals Round (ACAR).

Two aged care providers, Hazelwood House Hostel in Churchill ($5.1 million) and Heritage Manor Aged Care in Morwell ($3.6 million), will also benefit from $8.7 million in Zero Real Interest Loans.

Among the successful applicants is new service Traralgon Community Aged Care which has been allocated 90 high care and 30 low care places.

Hazelwood House Hostel (32), Yallambee Aged Care (24) and Brookfield Park Nursing Home (15) have also all been allocated high care places. Heritage Manor Aged Care has been allocated 10 high care and 20 low care places.

Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester said the investment in much needed aged care services was positive news for the Latrobe Valley community.

Earlier this year Mr Chester encouraged Latrobe Valley aged care providers to apply to ACAR. He had lobbied the government on the need for additional aged care places in the region with many local providers stretched to capacity.

“This investment in aged care in the Latrobe Valley will be welcomed by local providers as our community deals with the needs of an ageing population,” Mr Chester said.

“Many existing facilities are stretched to capacity and have found it difficult to expand in the current economic climate.

“Allocating over 220 new aged care places is a significant step towards improving the availability of services for older people and their families.

“Although not as beneficial as direct grants, providing Zero Real Interest Loans is also a boost for local facilities seeking to expand current services.”

Mr Chester said it was important that the Federal Government continued to recognise the need for increased aged care services in the region.

“There are many challenges facing the future of aged care providers which will have an impact on long-term financial viability,” Mr Chester said.

“As demand increases, there is an expectation of new and improved facilities which will drive up costs in the aged care sector. There are also difficulties in attracting and retaining a skilled workforce.

“The level of support from the Federal Government needs to be ongoing if we are going to address the needs of older people in our community in the future.”

Fourteen Community Aged Care Packages (CACP) have also been allocated to the region to support people who require care in their own home.

CACP have been allocated to the following organisations in Morwell: DutchCare Home Care (5), Southern Cross Care (5) and Latrobe Community Health Service (4).

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