Butler to introduce new aged care nursing requirements as soon as Parliament resumes

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Federal Health and Aged Care Minister Mark Butler is introducing legislation on aged care nurse mandates to Parliament as early as next month.

Mr Butler told The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald that he is drafting bills to be put before Parliament as soon as it resumes, including a new aged care funding model with a 200-daily-care-minutes requirement (increasing to 215 from July 2024), 40 of which must be with a Registered Nurse, and on-site nurses for morning, afternoon and night shifts from July 2023.

“I don’t buy the argument from the former Government that the difference between 16 hours a day and 24 hours a day will have to be filled by vast numbers of nurses brought in from overseas,” he said, adding that migration will “have to play a role” in boosting staffing numbers, as well as counting part-time aged care nurses who may pick up extra hours in the modelling.

Labor’s election promise brings forward the previous Coalition Government’s 24/7 nursing requirement by a year; Parliament will not sit again until 26 July.