It was a waiting game, but we got there in the end and the Final Report of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety was tabled in Parliament.
The report was titled Care, Dignity and Respect and overall there was a call for fundamental reform of the aged care system.
Tony Pagone QC and Lynelle Briggs AO said: “The extent of substandard care in Australia’s aged care system reflects both poor quality on the part of some aged care providers and fundamental systemic flaws with the way the Australian aged care system is designed and governed. People receiving aged care deserve better. The Australian community is entitled to expect better.”
There were 148 wide ranging recommendations made from the Royal Commissioners in the March 1 announcement including:
- A new Aged Care Act
- An integrated system for the long-term support and care
- A System Governor
- An Inspector-General of Aged Care
The recommendations also covered a plan to deliver, measure and report on high quality aged care, accessible information, a new aged care program, greater access to care at home – which included clearing the home care waiting list and more.
The Commissioners suggest a more restorative and preventative approach to care with increased support for the development of ‘small household’ models of accommodation.
There is also a call for a funding shake up given for too long, they said, the legislation that governs Australian aged care has focused on the funding requirements of aged care providers rather than the care needs of elderly Australians.
An independent pricing authority was included in the Recommendations together with a call for a simpler and fairer approach to personal contributions and means testing which would see a phase out of the Refundable Accommodation Deposit and also a new aged care levy.
In a concluding recommendation, it was suggested the government report back to Parliament by the 31st May, 2021 in response to the recommendations.
It was concluded that fundamental change is needed for Australian aged care.
You can learn more and view some other recommendations by clicking here.
Here at Aged Care Ready, we recognise the current flaws in the Aged Care System – we also acknowledge that some providers and aspects of the Aged Care System work well.
We have always prided ourselves on being fully transparent and work direct with all of our clients to find the best solution for them.
Our Aged Care Associate Director, Naomi Anderson, says the need for home style model of care is something that we (ACR) have been speaking about for a long time.
“We saw an increasing trend in 2019 when the current quality standards were released, but quite frankly, the trajectory just isn’t steep enough,” says Ms Anderson.
“There are still many facilities out there that have simply whacked a label on their model of care as homestyle, but are far from it,”
“These changes require huge shifts not only in the physical environment, but also in mindset – the argument being ‘not in the budget’ to make a bigger change.”
According to Ms Anderson, the underlying issue always points back to staffing, or lack thereof.
Neglect: staffing. Chemical restraint: not enough staff to care for our elderly loved ones, so best sedate them to make it easier. Physical restraint: not enough staff to supervise.
“We MUST put our elderly at the centre of THEIR care,” says Naomi Anderson.
“The Aged Care System needs a major overhaul, and desperately needs to see some sort of formalised staffing ratio’s to hold facilities accountable to.”