Aged Care

CHA has provided a submission to the Productivity Commission in response to its draft Report Caring for Older Australians, which was released in January 2011 for public consultation.  In its response, CHA notes that the Commission's draft recommendations embrace the reform directions put in CHA's submissions to the Inquiry, which called for fundamental reform of aged care in order to secure its sustainability and improve its responsiveness to individual consumer needs.  CHA's response, however, also canvases a number of aspects of some proposals which, if addressed , would strengthen the overall reform package.  Also attached is a supplementary submission made following CHA's appearance at the Commission's public hearings in April 2011 at which CHA was invited to provide specific comment on a number of issues.

CHA's response to the Department of Health and Ageing's recent issues paper on enhanced prudential arrangements for residential aged care accommodation bonds.

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Under current arrangements, the Commonwealth is the purchaser and price setter for residential aged care, with provision for co-payments from residents assessed as capable of contributing to the cost of their care. However, because the Commonwealth also controls most aspects of the supply of aged care services, there is no market informed basis for setting prices for these services. Catholic Health Australia argues for a long term and transparent basis for setting fair prices.

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CHA's expert policy analysts produced analysis of the parties' aged care election policies as they are announced.

People with a profound or severe disability should be entitled to lifelong care and support, Catholic Health Australia has told the Inquiry. This could be done through a Commonwealth-funded scheme to guarantee appropriate care for all people aged over 65 who are assessed as in need of care, regardless of the setting in which that care is delivered.

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Catholic Health Australia has conducted a national survey of aged care providers to assess the level of access to GPs enjoyed by residents of aged care homes, and the quality of information and interactions between GPs and aged care providers.

Click here to access the survey results.

Having supported and welcomed the introduction of the Aged Care Funding Instrument, Catholic Health Australia offered a number of recommendations it felt would improve the system upon its introduction.

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This assessment of the Productivity Commission's draft report Caring for Older Australians was presented to the 11th national conference of the National Rural Health Alliance -- March 2011.

Over the years, a range of policies and programs targeting the provision of aged care services in rural and remote locations have been developed.  The Productivity Commission's recommendations, if implemented, would result in a fundamental reshaping of the current aged care system. The paper assesses the implications of the recommendations for rural and remote services and, where relevant, also considers the Productivity Commission's recommendations in the context of other recent reforms in the primary health care sector affecting rural and remote health services.

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The neglect of palliative care in the broader health policy agenda presents as an urgent health challenge for governments. Palliative care is not an optional extra -- it must be viewed as an integral core component of health care delivery and take place in any setting. Governments must invest in providing palliative care services as a core part of health care and not as an "add-on extra".

Catholic Health Australia's new publication, Pursuing Excellence in Palliative Care, aims to contribute to the revision of the National Palliative Care Strategy and calls for an adherence to fifteen principles that should be responded to by governments and service providers in order to deliver excellence in palliative care.

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Following a 2009 forum on the changing face of aged care, Catholic Health Australia produced a policy paper that presented a package of reforms to improve the responsiveness and sustainability of community aged care services.

Click here to download the policy paper.

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