A string of high profile abuse cases in residential aged care homes has prompted a major government funding boost aimed at measures to protect the elderly.
As part of a $106 million federal funding deal, rsidential aged care centres will undergo spot checks, staff will be better trained and nursing home investigators will be deployed.
“There are fantastic facilities all around the country, but I also know that there are other that are not up to standard and that’s why we’re acting to put this policing of standards resourcing in place,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters in Canberra on Wednesday..
Mr Morrison said it was important that senior Australians live with dignity in their retirement.
“All of us have our own experiences – parents, elderly siblings, others that we know and we love – and the one thing we want for them is dignity.” he added.
“The one thing we want for them is to be able to age with respect, with choices, to be able to be surrounded by those that they love and to continue to enjoy life in its full, for every opportunity that they have.”
The Prime Minister said the new funding would be used to police the standards in residential aged care facilities, as well ensuring that standards were raised.
He said said the capacity of residential aged care facilities in regional Australia would also be expanded to allow people stay within their communities.
The funding announcement comes just a week after an aged care worker was charged after allegedly assaulting an elderly man at a facility on Sydney’s northern beaches.
It is alleged the worker pulled at the 82-year-old man’s shirt, and used a shoe to hit him repeatedly.
Superintendent David Darcy from Northern Beaches Police Area Command said at the time that elder abuse can take various forms, including physical, psychological, emotional, or financial abuse.
“These vulnerable people need the communities help to be their voice,” he said.