A good response to yesterday’s prediction by Helping Hand CEO Chris Stewart that COVID-19 will force consolidation in the sector.
Darryl Chapman, the CEO of Akooramak, a provider with a 98-bed aged care home plus home care services at Warwick in southeast Queensland, has argued that size is not always the answer to providing quality care.
“Aged care is not just about the balance sheet and economies of scale,” he said.
“Let’s see some stats.”
“Reputable stand-alone services with significant community connectedness are a gold mine for quality care, empathy, compassion. It has nothing to do with for-profit or not-for-profit.”
“There is something to be said for organisations where the CEO and DON know every staff member, resident, client, and family member by name. While we struggle financially, that is not from poor management, but significant Government underfunding.”
“Funny how this sector is virtually outperforming in this current global crisis with bugger all additional help – you actually have to have a confirmed case to get any significant help and then only after you have exhausted what little you have – and is subject to an unbelievable burden of legislation, punitive assessment and a Royal Commission.”
There are no arguments that stand-alone operators can provide very good care.
But where operators are struggling, there are opportunities for other providers to bring their resources in and ensure that an aged care home – particularly those in regional areas that are at the centre of their communities – can keep their doors open.
Of course, this relies on larger operators having the funding – and the incentives – to do so.