We recently made a submission to the Department of Health and Ageing on a new model for In-Home Aged Care services.
There were four major points that we wanted to highlight to the government, that we think are critically important for any new model in aged care.
The reform proposed by the government will significantly overhaul our In-Home Care system, but we are still asking fundamental questions about how the new system will work. Once the substance of the reform is settled, providers, workers and care recipients need to ensure they can and do comply with any new requirements, and time is needed to ensure there are no gaps in safety, quality, and care.
Part of ensuring we have a model that provides the In-Home Care that all Australians deserve is having clear roles and responsibilities. Whose responsibility, where there is overlapping care provision, is it, for example to ensure major safety incidents are reported? These are matters of quality and safety, that we think cannot be rushed.
We also wanted to ensure that when there are multiple carers for a person, that their carers, medical practitioners, allied health professionals and any other service providers act as a team, with effective communication and reporting.
And, of course, there must be an efficient way to fund such care, with a compliance structure that is easy to use, and we must ensure sufficient funding – indexed for inflation – is available.
Only then will we have the In-Home Aged Care services that all Australians deserve.