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Invitation to apply to 275 new aged care places in Tasmania.



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Media Release

The Hon Julie Bishop MP Minister for Ageing

20 August 2004 JB161/04

Invitation to apply to 275 new aged care places in Tasmania

Aged care providers in Tasmania are encouraged to apply for 275 new aged care places subsidised by the Australian Government, the Minister for Ageing Julie Bishop said today.

The 2004 Regional Distribution of Aged Care Places details the availability of places within the Aged Care Planning Regions in states and territories. This publication also highlights key issues for the 2004 Aged Care Approvals Round, including the identification of communities of interest within certain Aged Care Planning Regions.

It is important to note that while some regions will have a community of interest identified, it is also possible to apply for places for other areas within the same region.

The new places are part of the estimated 27,900 new aged care places to be allocated Australia-wide over the next three years, and were announced as part of the Australian Government's $2.2 billion record funding package, Investing in Australia's Aged Care: More Places, Better Care. Over the next three years the Australian Government will allocate 635 new aged care places to Tasmania.

“A key issue in assessing applications will be the ability of the aged care provider to make allocated places available as soon as possible. We want to ensure that older Australians are able to access a place in residential care when they require it,” Ms Bishop said.

The government recognises that some homes in rural and remote areas and those that service other special needs groups may need capital assistance in addition to that available through the capital income streams.

Up to $40.7 million will be made available across Australia to assist in the construction or upgrading of residential care services. Grants are allocated on a competitive basis to applicants that demonstrate an urgent need for capital works and a lack of capacity to fund the proposed works, taking into account all possible sources of funding.

“The Australian Government is committed to working in partnership with aged care recipients, their families, carers, staff and aged care providers. We are delivering on our vision of a world class system that delivers high quality, affordable and accessible services that meet the needs of older Australians who come from a diverse range of cultural, linguistic and socio-economic backgrounds,” Ms Bishop said.

“In contrast, the Auditor General found the former Labor Government left a 10,000 aged care place shortage across the nation. Labor still has no aged care policy and no vision for providing care for older Australians, their carers and families.”

Advertisements calling for applications for the new places will appear in the national and regional media from 21 August 2004. Application Kits are available by phoning 1800 500 853 and on-line at www.ageing.health.gov.au/acar2004

Media contact: Rachael Thompson 02 6277 7280 or 0417 265 289