Bupa CEO backs higher aged care co-contributions

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Hisham El-Ansary, CEO of Bupa Asia Pacific, has come out in favour of higher co-contributions from aged care residents with the means to pay.

Appearing on Blenheim Partners’ No Limitations podcast, the Bupa boss discussed the challenges facing the industry, including workforce and funding issues.

“I think the Government has come some way to addressing those concerns, but not enough. The average funding for a resident per day is around $250, $260.

“Now, that’s just over $10 per hour and with that, you’ve got to provide the accommodation, food, clinical services, entertainment, gardening, cooking, and cleaning. It just doesn’t stack up,” he said.

He raised the idea of lifting caps on the maximum amount people are required to contribute to their own care, saying that those who can afford to pay more should do so.

“If you’re living in a multi-million-dollar property in Manly, or Mosman, or Brighton in Victoria, is it right that the maximum you can contribute is $28,000 in your lifetime? Or should we sort of say that, for people who can afford to, they should be contributing more?

“Bupa’s in a good place to be able to look at the experience in other countries. Universally, there’s a strong mix of public and private funding. And even in New Zealand, residents there contribute to a greater extent, and I think there’s an opportunity for that to happen here,” he said.

The New Zealand model has been cited as evidence for higher user co-contributions to aged care, as under the “Plan B” scheme put forward at the LEADERS SUMMIT 2022.