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Need for culturally appropriate care will grow.

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Media Release Kevin Andrews Minister for Ageing

KA 94/2002 Friday October 25, 2002


THE need for culturally-appropriate aged care will increase over the next 10 years as the number of older Australians from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds grows substantially, Federal Minister for Ageing Kevin Andrews said today.

Speaking about "Culturally Appropriate Aged Care in the New Millennium" at a forum hosted by the Australian Multicultural Foundation, Mr Andrews said the Federal Government supported 160 ethno-specific services across the country, covering 34 communities.

``The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has projected that the number of older Australians from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds will increase by 66 per cent between 1996 and 2011,'' the Minister said.

``This is substantially greater than the general increase in the population over 65.

``So as a group, our older population will include proportionally more people with diverse cultural associations - 25 per cent; up from 18 per cent in 1996.

``In the coming decades, the current dominance of this group by European cultures will give way to people from Asian backgrounds.

``The provision of culturally-appropriate aged care services is one of the key challenges for the Federal Government and the aged care sector now and into the future.''

The Federal Government, through its Ethnic Aged Care Framework, oversees the `Partners in Culturally Appropriate Care' project and funds six organisations around Australia to establish culturally appropriate aged care facilities. The groups include Anglicare in Victoria and Transcultural Aged Care Services in NSW.

Media Contact: Felicity Dargan (Press Secretary) 0409 550 446

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