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Seniors flock to health forums.

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Seniors Flock To Health Forums

8 June 2010

Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Federal Member for Port Adelaide the Hon Mark Butler, Federal Member for Makin Tony Zappia and Federal Member for Wakefield Nick Champion addressed more than 200 seniors at a Pensioner and Seniors Information Day at the Salisbury Bowling Club today.

The large group were also addressed by representatives from Centrelink, SA Police and the Seniors Information Service.

“Today’s information day was a chance for the local, aged community to learn more about issues of importance to them, such as the National Health and Hospital Reform,” Mr Butler said.

“The Rudd Government is investing $907.5 million over four years to deliver more highly qualified aged care workers, more aged care places, more health care services and greater protections for older Australians. This will include up to $280 million to the states and territories to support long stay older patients in public hospitals.

“The Health Reform will see integrated healthcare in one convenient location, meaning seniors will no longer have to travel to visit various healthcare providers. There will be more doctors and nurses providing better access to medical professionals, and by taking the

pressure off local hospitals, waiting times will be massively reduced.”

Seniors were also provided with information about measures for crime prevention and seniors’ safety, as well as aged care options, information for carers, and financial advice for part-pensioners.

Mr Zappia said: “The forum was also a terrific opportunity to hear from seniors about the issues that are important to them. Given the overwhelming turnout, we are now looking at hosting a second forum in Makin for anyone was unable to attend.”

Member for Wakefield Nick Champion said: “Local residents have told me that the information provided today was very useful and that being able to speak directly with local services was a valuable opportunity.”

Media Contacts: Samantha Regione (Mr Butler’s office): 0418 112 688, James Peikert

(Mr Zappia’s office): (08) 8265 3100 Jess Nitschke (Mr Champion’s office):(08) 8284 2422


• In 2009, there were 2.9 million people in Australia aged 65 or over, accounting for 13 per cent of the population. Around one million of these older Australians received assistance from aged and community care services.

• A consequence of the ageing of our population will be growing numbers of older people needing aged care services. The 2010 Intergenerational Report forecasts the proportion of our population aged 65 or over will increase from 14 per cent in 2010 to 23 per cent by 2050.

• The number of people aged 85 or over is expected to more than quadruple over the next 40 years, to 1.8 million people by 2050. • The Rudd Government is reforming the fundamentals of our health and hospital system, including funding and governance, to provide a sustainable foundation for

providing better services now and in the future. • The Government will take full policy and funding responsibility for aged care services, including a transfer to the Commonwealth of current resourcing for aged care services from the Home and Community Care (HACC) program, except in

Victoria. • This will enable the development of a consistent aged care system covering basic home care through to nursing homes. It will enable the Commonwealth Government - as the majority funder of Australia’s health and hospital system - to drive increased

integration between acute care, public hospitals and GPs and primary health care. • Under the reform, older Australians and their families will have better access to information and assessment for aged care services, and assistance to access services in the place that best suits them. • Over the next four years, the Rudd Government will provide more than $47 billion for

aged and community care services, including $10.8 billion in 2010-11.