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New aged care home for West Beach.

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Media Release

The Hon Julie Bishop MP Minister for Ageing

6 August 2004 JB151/04

New aged care home for West Beach

The West Beach community in South Australia will soon have a new aged care home following today’s ‘turning of the first sod’ by the Federal Minister for Ageing, Julie Bishop, and Simon Birmingham, the Liberal Candidate for Hindmarsh.

The new home, to be operated by Southern Cross Care (SA), will have 40 low-care places funded by the Australian Government. It is expected to be completed in June 2005.

“Southern Cross Care has a long history of providing high quality aged care for older South Australians,” Ms Bishop said. “I welcome Southern Cross Care’s decision to give priority access to this new home to people with dementia and people who are financially or socially disadvantaged.

“An estimated 176,000 Australians are currently living with dementia, and this number is predicted to grow as our population ages. In June 2003 the electorate of Hindmarsh had the second highest number of people aged 70 and over of any electorate in Australia. Through this new development Southern Cross Care is helping to meet the needs of local residents now, as well as planning for future needs.”

Southern Cross Care (SA) operates 12 residential aged care services, providing 873 aged care places in Adelaide, as well as community care services. It received $22.6 million in Australian Government recurrent funding in 2002-03.

In June 2004 the organisation also received almost $3 million in Australian Government funding as part of more than $513 million allocated to aged care providers in a one-off payment to help them improve safety standards in aged care homes.

“The one-off payment is part of the Australian Government’s $2.2 billion record funding package, Investing in Australia’s Aged Care: More Places, Better Care, announced as part of the 2004 Federal Budget,” Ms Bishop said.

“Through the package the Australian Government is delivering on our vision for a world-class system of aged care that provides high quality, affordable and accessible services to meet the individual needs and preferences of older Australians.

“In contrast, in its 13 years of Government Labor neglected aged care, left office with a 10,000 aged care place shortage, failed to introduce national legislated care standards and refused to act when an independent report found nursing homes delivering poor quality care. Labor still has no aged care policy.”

Media contact: Rachael Thompson 02 6277 7280 or 0417 265 289