Industry body explains need for aged care over hospital beds

June 6, 2014 | Aged Care Management

A leading industry body within the aged care industry, Leading Age Services Australia (LASA), has explained the necessity of protecting the quality of care and services for older Australians.

In a release issued May 26, LASA outlined the recent budget changes and the impacts these would eventually have on elderly Australians.

CEO of LASA, Patrick Reid, explained the dangers of such a change, and that it could lead to an uneven aged care industry which compromises jobs.

“The age services industry was dealt a considerable blow in the budget with the removal of the Aged Care Payroll Tax Supplement, comprising $653 Million over four years,” Mr Reid said in a press release.

Mr Reid raises valid concerns, as the industry is growing with no sign of slowing down, and funding cannot afford to be diverted away. Potentially, this diversion in funding and the subsequent effects on aged care facilities could force elderly Australians into public hospital beds out of necessity.

The cost of providing one of these public hospital beds is substantially higher than residential aged care funding. Aged care providers will need to prepare for financial changes in the industry, and put adequate preparations in place. Education of staff, optimising ACFI funding and stronger management will become a necessity.

By optimising in other areas, aged care providers should be able to cut back on operating expenditure.

“Providers are willing to work smarter but their unique operation requires an equitable funding approach. The payroll tax supplement was developed for this very reason.”

It’s unlikely any sort of additional supplement will be supplied in the short term, and as such providers will be forced to adapt.

What are the biggest challenges facing the aged care sector? We would love to hear your thoughts. Contact us.