Royal Commission into Aged Care suspends hearings and workshops due to coronavirus

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Following the Disability Royal Commission’s decision to suspend all hearings and community forums, the Commissioners (pictured above) have decided to follow suit, suspending all hearings and workshops for the time being, subject to ongoing review.

“This decision is a consequence of the evolving coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and based on information available from the Australian Government,” the press release states.

The suspension will also apply to group consultations which have been part of the engagement work being conducted by Royal Commission staff, and affect all hearings and workshops currently scheduled until at least the end of May 2020.

The Royal Commission had been due to reconvene on 30 March in Adelaide for a three-day hearing into access to mental, oral health and allied health in aged care.

The statement recognises the efforts that providers and their staff are currently making in tackling the virus – and their wish for the sector to be involved in the conversation.

“Meaningful engagement with the sector is paramount to the work of the Royal Commission’s inquiry into aged care quality and safety, which is why we have decided to suspend all hearings and workshops. We must allow service providers and Government to fully focus on their response to the pandemic,” the Commissioners said.

You must ask however what this will mean for the deadline for their Final Report – due 12 November.

Could it – like so many other events at the moment – be delayed?