One of the key aged care providers in the Barossa have thrown their support behind all 149 recommendations made as part of the aged care royal commission and are now calling on the Government to increase the level of funding in residential care.
Barossa Village CEO, Mr Simon Newbold said the increase in funding is most critical and needs to be implemented to provide a sustainable sector.
Mr Newbold said the Government have already pledged $452 million in short term funding in six key areas with other recommendations to be considered as part of the May budget.
“The Aged Care Royal Commission provides a once is a generation opportunity to completely overhaul the system,” said Mr Newbold.
“The Government acknowledges that there needs to be major reforms of the sector and that the elderly are central to the reforms. It is to ensure our most frail receive the respect and care that supports their dignity and also acknowledges the contribution they have made to society throughout their lives.
“Barossa Village supports these reforms and have provided person centered care for many years. We have always put our clients and residents first.”
Mr Newbold said it is an opportunity to change what the aged care sector looks like and emphasised the importance of community.
“It’s a real community issue that needs to change,” Mr Newbold said.
“We acknowledged it has been underfunded for many years but it is about what the Government’s appetite is to increase that funding.”
Forecasts predict there will be less taxpayers funding more retired people by 2030 and finding a solution towards those forecasts is one of the challenges.
Already Barossa Village are working towards this by providing more than residential care services and over the past few years they have embraced an integrated care business model investing in retirement living, community care and allied health.
“It is a good opportunity around changing people’s expectations with their living environment,” Mr Newbold said.
Mr Newbold called on the community to lobby the Federal Government, in particular local MP, Mr Tony Pasin.
“We are here for the long run and have lots of opportunities,” Mr Newbold said.
“The Royal Commission has highlighted we have undervalued the elderly and have an opportunity to change that providing Government and community work together to make that happen. We will have to develop new business models of care and living environments and that’s the exciting part.”
Tanunda Lutheran Home CEO, Mr Lee Martin said one of the biggest challenges is around staffing and how the industry can recruit more into the sector.
He identified the growing employment opportunities, saying Tanunda Lutheran Home could employ at least 20 people with the appropriate qualifications.
Attending a National Summit last week, Mr Martin said one of the biggest aspects they learnt from that is to ensure the Governance behind the aged care providers are able and willing to support the business of aged care.
“If there was a call to arms, I would suggest anyone who wants a job, there is a job in aged care and Tanunda Lutheran Home could employ 20-30 people if they had the qualifications,” Mr Martin said.
He said while they are eagerly awaiting the outcome of the Royal Commission, at a Federal Government level, Mr Martin encouraged the community to start the process of respecting the elderly in the community.
“Checking on your elderly neighbours, volunteer to support and look after our ageing population,” Mr Martin said.
“Any bit of change will assist in taking aged care into the future.”
And while they are keen to strive towards providing a world leading service, Mr Martin said they need the assistance from the Government to ensure the business they offer continues into the future.