The most important proactive initiative in aged care has as its objective to ensure Australia has an aged care workforce in 2020 and beyond.
The Chair of the Aged Care Workforce Taskforce John Pollaers says the strategy – developed after nine months of consultation with providers, consumers and workers – can be executed in the next 12 months to three years and will set the industry up for the next seven.
‘A Matter of Care – a strategy for Australia’s aged care workforce’ outlines 14 strategic actions to tackle Australia’s aged care workforce challenges including:
- The development of an industry-led code of practice to drive cultural change in the sector.
- The set-up of an Aged Services Industry Council to lead the implementation of the strategy with CEO’s from each of the peak bodies – LASA, ACSA and the Aged Care Guild – and other provider groups.
- Improved education and training led by an Aged Services Industry Reference Committee (IRC).
- The establishment of an Aged Care Industry Growth and Research Translation Centre to drive innovation and new services.
- A new Remote Accord for providers in regional, rural and remote areas.
- Changes to improve workforce rewards.
- Measures to dispel the negative image of aged care.
Prof Pollaers states his message to the industry is to “act now”.
LASA has already thrown its support behind the development of an industry-led code of practice.
“Essential to this, is fair resourcing of the sector that reflects the true costs of care and capacity to train and retain quality staff,” CEO Sean Rooney says.
“The current funding system is not sustainable and a national solution to funding the growing cost of aged care is required.”