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Respite boost for local carers.

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Media contacts Mark Williams (Senator Hill) 08 8237 7920 0401 147 558

MEDIA RELEASE SENATOR THE HON ROBERT HILL Minister for Defence Leader of the Government in the Senate


Wednesday, 29 June 2005 108/2005


Older Australians and their carers in Adelaide will have easier access to respite care and carer support with the announcement of new Australian Government funding contracts for community care, SA Senator Robert Hill announced today.

Under the new arrangements, the Australian Government is providing funding of around $2.07 million to Helping Hand Aged Care, based at Bowden, and $788,000 to Associazione Nationale Famiglie degli Emigrati (ANFE), based at Renown Park, for the next three years to offer respite services for local residents.

“Respite services enable carers of older people to take a break from their demanding and challenging caring role,” Senator Hill said.

“By providing funding for respite services, the Australian Government is helping to ensure that carers can continue to provide the care that enables hundreds of thousands of older Australians to remain living at home and in their community.

“The new funding arrangements are part of the Australian Government’s initiatives under the A New Strategy for Community Care - The Way Forward document released by the Federal Minister for Ageing, Julie Bishop.

“The successful respite service providers have demonstrated innovative, efficient and simpler service delivery arrangements, as outlined in the new strategy.”

In addition to new and innovative respite services, the Australian Government is providing $182 million over the next three years through the National Respite for Carers Program and the Commonwealth Carelink Program to make it easier for

carers to access information about community care and access to respite services.

Co-locating Commonwealth Carer Respite Centres, and Commonwealth Carelink Centres in most areas will also make it easier for carers to access respite as well as information about aged care services.

“By offering these services the Australian Government is supporting local carers, and helping to ensure that older Australians who rely on a carer can remain living at home and in their local community,” Senator Hill said.

“Through these initiatives the Australian Government is realising its vision for a world class system of aged care that provides high quality, affordable and accessible services to meet the individual needs and choices of older Australians.”

Since coming to office in 1996 the Australian Government has delivered a sevenfold increase in funding for the National Respite for Carers Program, from less than $20 million in 1995-96 to more than $135 million in 2005-06.

In the 2005 Federal Budget the Government increased support for carers, including a $207 million package of extra respite, particularly for working carers and those in rural and remote areas, and further financial support in the form of a one-off payment for people in receipt of Carer Allowance and Carer Payment.