31 Mar Royal Commission Report Released
After 2 years, the final report from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, titled Care, Dignity and Respect, was tabled in Parliament on 1 March 2021.
The report outlined 148 recommendations, with a call to rewrite the Aged Care Act to focus on the care needs of older people rather than the funding aspects. Not all recommendations and observations in the Report were agreed by both Commissioners, and we are yet to hear a full response from Government. The Commissioners have given the Government a 31 May deadline to respond and we may see some reforms in this year’s Budget.
The Government has initially responded with a promise of additional funding of $452.2m to address immediate concerns, and its intention to respond to the Report through the lens of five pillars:
- Home care
- Residential care quality and safety
- Residential care services and sustainability
- Workforce, and
One of the key reforms to expect will be measures to address the demand for home care. Since the 2018-19 Budget the Government has added $5.5 billion in new funding to deliver an additional 83,000 home care packages, but the wait is still long.