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Federal Government requires greater accountability from aged care providers.



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The Hon Julie Bishop MP Minister for Ageing 17 February 2005

Federal Government requires greater accountability from aged care providers

Providers of residential aged care will now be required to offer better training opportunities to staff and produce an audited annual financial statement to residents and prospective residents in return for a substantial increase in funding, the Federal Minister for Ageing, Julie Bishop, announced today.

17 February 2005 JB012/05

Providers of residential aged care will now be required to offer better training opportunities to staff and produce an audited annual financial statement to residents and prospective residents in return for a substantial increase in funding, the Federal Minister for Ageing, Julie Bishop, announced today.

“Today I have written to all providers outlining the provisions of the Conditional Adjustment Payment (CAP) which has been developed in consultation with the aged care sector,” Ms Bishop said.

“The aim of the new measures is to improve the quality, accessibility and sustainability of the aged care sector to better meet the needs of an ageing population.

“In response to recommendations of the Hogan Review regarding the management and viability of aged care services in Australia, the government offered approved providers an initial 1.75 per cent increase in the annually indexed basic subsidy, rising to an additional 7 per cent by 2007-08.

“The new payment, worth $877.8 million, has given aged care homes an immediate boost in income to enable them to continue to improve the quality of care they provide for their residents.

“It will enable them to offer more competitive wages to nurses and other staff, thereby enhancing further their ability to provide high quality care and support. The new payment will allow providers to increase wages in line with demand in order to attract and retain quality staff.

“The new payments will also encourage more training of staff, from personal care

workers to highly qualified specialist nurses. As a result, aged care will become a more attractive career option, staff turn-over will be reduced and residents and their families will have added confidence about the standard of hands-on care being delivered.”

Ms Bishop said to encourage age care providers to become more efficient and accountable, the new payment will also be conditional on providers meeting obligations in regard to their financial accountability.

“As well as providing residents with better information on the aged care homes in which they live, the provision of audited accounts will also encourage the development of performance analysis to assist providers to achieve appropriate efficiencies,” she said.

ENDS

Media contact: Kay McNiece 0412 132 585