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Monday, 1 September 2014
Page: 9151


Mr SHORTEN (MaribyrnongLeader of the Opposition) (14:18): My question is to the Prime Minister. One year ago today, the Prime Minister promised a government of no surprises and no excuses. This morning, as part of Dementia Awareness Month, I visited the Kangara Waters aged-care facility, where the Prime Minister has cut the dementia and severe behaviour supplement for 16 residents. When did the Prime Minister tell these Australians—indeed, any Australians—before the election that he would cut this supplement of $16 a day?

Mr Dutton interjecting

Mr Hutchinson interjecting

The SPEAKER: The Minister for Health will desist, as will the member for Lyons.

Ms Macklin interjecting

The SPEAKER: The member for Jagajaga will also desist.

Mr ABBOTT (WarringahPrime Minister) (14:18): Obviously, dementia is a very, very serious issue. This government certainly intends to do all that we reasonably can to help aged-care providers to provide appropriately for their patients with dementia. The problem is that the scheme that the Leader of the Opposition refers to was poorly designed and grossly underfunded by the former government. The former government allocated, as I recall, about $10 million for this particular scheme. Because of the poor design, at least 10 times that amount was spent in a very short space of time. We have suspended the program and we are working with aged-care providers to redesign the program on a basis that is sustainable so that people with dementia get the care that they deserve.