“Everything is on the table but there are only two things that matter, safety and quality,” The Minister for Aged Care, Ken Wyatt AM said on the announcement of a new aged care workforce taskforce.
The taskforce, consisting of widely experienced individuals within and outside the aged care industry led by Professor Pollaers, focuses on providing safety and quality to seniors in Australia.
“Under Professor Pollaers’ leadership, the role of the taskforce will be to consider new thinking and to encourage the incredible opportunities working in aged care,” the Minister said.
“Aged care is an industry that matters, and our work will be underpinned by a fundamental understanding of the needs of the consumer now and into the future,” Professor Pollaers said.
Supported by two million dollars in funding from the Australian Government, the taskforce plans to:
- reach out to senior Australian and their families, consumer organisations, informal carers, aged care workers and volunteers
- consult with many others including unions, health professionals, universities and the health, education, employment and disability sectors
- reference the June 2017 report of the Senate Community Affairs References Committee inquiry into the future of the aged care sector workforce, the workforce-related observations in the government commissioned Legislated Review of Aged Care 2017 and the recently released Review of National Aged Care Quality Regulatory Processes
- oversee and sponsor a combination of working summits, public submission processes, technical and specialist groups to inform its work
“The Taskforce will explore short, medium and longer term options to boost supply, address demand and improve productivity for the aged care workforce,” said Minister Wyatt.
With the continuously increasing demands for the aged care workforce, the taskforce is expected to be completed and reported to the Minister by 30 June 2018.
However, the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) have expressed disappointment, saying nurses and staff on the front line of aged care have been excluded from the taskforce.
“It’s inconceivable that the Government has set-up a taskforce to investigate workforce issues and plan a future workforce strategy without nurses and carers,” ANMF Assistant Federal Secretary Annie Butler said.
“Nurses and carers working on the frontline in aged care are best placed to advise on what is required to ensure proper, safe care is provided to elderly nursing home residents.
“They are the ones that fully understand the complex conditions of the frail aged, the skills that are required to attend to these conditions and how many staff that takes.”
More articles on My Health Career:
- Gearing for the Growth of Exercise & Sports Science Professionals
- Health Workforce Scholarship Program for rural practitioners starting soon
- Can aged care services be revolutionized?