Call for minimum nurse staffing in aged care: Senate inquiry

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A long-running Senate inquiry into the aged care sector workforce has highlighted the big issues facing the sector, with the introduction of a minimum nursing requirement for aged care facilities and the requirement a registered nurse to be “present at all times” among the main recommendations.

This would likely require “additional funding and support from governments”, according to the final report by the Senate Community Affairs References Committee, created back in December 2015.

“Specific attention” should also be paid to issues of pay, job security and working conditions and its impact in remote and outback areas as well as allowing regional and remote workers and providers to have better access to aged care training.

The Fed Govt will now consider the recommendations, which also propose a requirement for providers to publish and update their staff to client ratios; establishing national minimum standards for training and accreditation; and the creation of a national employment screening or worker registration scheme.

The findings follow the Govt’s announcement in the May budget that it would provide $2M to create an industry-led workforce strategy that will be set up next month.

You can read the full report here.

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