Federal Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese says a Labor Government would fill the aged care staffing shortfall by bringing in doctors and nurses from overseas and investing in skills training.
Writing in The Australian, Mr Albanese – who has heavily criticised the Government for its handling of aged care, and has pledged 24/7 registered nurses in every residential aged care facility in Australia – says if elected, a Labor Government would roll out 465,000 fee-free TAFE places and 20,000 new university places in areas of workforce need, including medical professionals and caring roles such as aged care and childcare.
The Labor leader said that this training would take time, and that bringing in workers from outside the country may be needed to meet short-term needs.
“We understand that our ageing population demands a new emphasis on medical and caring skills and we will deliver the resources to make sure those skills are taught.
“That won’t end the immediate shortfalls. In the short term, we must recruit more overseas doctors and nurses, but this is a stopgap,” he said.
Mr Albanese excoriated the Morrison Government in his Budget Reply speech earlier this month, accusing the Coalition of presiding over a “decade of failure” in aged care.