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Opening of the Harbourside Haven Nursing Home extension, Harbourside Haven Nursing Home, Shoal Bay.

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Speeches The Hon Danna Vale MP   Minister for Veterans' Affairs Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence Federal Member for Hughes

The Hon Danna Vale MP

Minister for Veterans' Affairs Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence

at the opening of the Harbourside Haven Nursing Home Extension.

Date: 1 June 2002

Harbourside Haven Nursing Home, Shoal Bay

I would like to make special mention of Mr William King, Chairman of the Board of Harbourside Haven, who was recently awarded the Order of Australia for his services to aged care. Congratulations Mr King, and thank you for all your hard work over the years.

I am pleased to be here today to officially open the upgraded facilities of Harbourside Haven Nursing Home.

This upgrade will improve the quality of life of Harbourside's residents, as well as providing vital extra beds for those in need of care from the local community.

As our veteran community grows older, services such as those provided at Harbourside Haven are becoming more and more important.

The shape of this country has been determined by the efforts of our veterans.

Ensuring that they and their families receive the best available health care is just one way that we can show our appreciation for the sacrifices that they have made.

The Federal Government was pleased to contribute $430,000 to this project through a Veteran and Community Grant awarded last year.

These grants support a wide range of projects that benefit veterans and the broader community in practical ways.

The grant to Harbourside Haven is just one of many given throughout Australia to ensure that our veteran community receives the best available care, particularly as its members grow older.

With the number of veterans and war widows needing aged care services expected to increase by 80 per cent in the next 10 years, this is an issue we take very seriously.

Almost a quarter of the residents of Harbourside Haven are veterans or war widows.

Unfortunately there are too many to name individually, but I know that many of these veteran residents are here this morning and I would like to take this opportunity to thank you personally for your service to this country.

You are part of an extraordinary group of men and women who answered your country's call in a time of need and we will continue to remember and honour your contribution to this nation.

Veteran and Community grants are an example of this Government's commitment to caring for veterans by

helping and supporting ex-service and community organisations as they care for veterans within their local communities.

Assisting care facilities to comply with accreditation and certification requirements is a priority when allocating this type of funding.

That is, in part, the intention of the grant awarded to this project and I'm pleased to witness the final results here today.

The restructuring of existing rooms and the addition of a new 22 bed extension will provide an extra 10 places and provide greater privacy and comfort for residents.

Improved safety systems, including a nurse call system are also important advances, providing help at the touch of a button.

I would like to congratulate the staff and management of Port Stephens Veterans and Aged Care for the work that is being done here.

The Port Stephens community - both veterans and others - will benefit greatly from this development and I am pleased to be a part of this re-opening today.

It is now my pleasure to declare these facilities officially open.


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