Estia sees opportunities in ACAR removal

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Estia executives have predicted the ASX-listed provider will play a “significant role” in the restructuring of the sector expected after the Aged Care Approvals Round licencing system (ACAR) is abolished, with acquisitions potentially on the cards.

At the AGM, CEO Ian Thorley (pictured) told investors that the company’s growth model is focused on the opportunities the reforms – set to begin in 2024 – will present.

“Publishing performance outcomes and the introduction of the Star Rating System from December 2022 will enhance consumer choice and ultimately improve care standards, increase the range of services, support innovation and improve asset quality.

“It is hard to see how this will not result in a restructuring of the sector as previously protected markets open up to competition. This will see a flight to quality providers for both consumers and workforce, the latter being more discerning in choosing companies who can best meet their professional aspirations,” he said.

According to Chairman Dr Gary Weiss AM, the reforms will create a stronger and more competitive aged care sector.

“Well-resourced residential aged care providers like Estia Health, with robust governance systems, committed management, skilled employees and strong balance sheets are well placed to play a leading role in the significant restructuring of the sector likely to eventuate,” he said.

The provider also announced a share buyback program, and will be constructing two new homes in NSW this year at a cost of $83 million.