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Home / Latest News / Confronting aged care inquiry likely to uncover ugly truths as PM boosts funding

Confronting aged care inquiry likely to uncover ugly truths as PM boosts funding

It was sparked in part by the revelations of abuse and poor treatment of dementia patients at Adelaide’s state government-run Oakden nursing home.

The prime minister announced the commission last September, warning it would be confronting.

“I think we should brace ourselves for some pretty bruising information about the way our loved ones, some of them have experienced some real mistreatment,” Mr Morrison said at the time.

On Sunday, Health Minister Greg Hunt announced $662 million of funding into the aged-care sector was part of the Coalition’s commitment to “continuous improvement” of aged care, even while the year-long royal commission was underway.

“Our sacred task and trust is to continuously improve aged care services in Australia,” he said.

“We’re taking steps now but we’re also taking the opportunity of planning for the next decade and the next generation.”

The nation’s leading advocacy group for seniors, COTA Australia, believes the new home-care funding will reduce the time people are waiting to receive subsidised services.

It is also glad about the extra $320 million to be paid to residential facilities by mid-2019 to help improve services for people in the centres.

But it wishes the funding was tied to lifting the number of staff at the centres and improving training.

“It is disappointing there are no conditions attached,” COTA Australia chief executive Ian Yates said.

Labor aged care spokeswoman Julie Collins said the latest funding did not make up for what the opposition says has been a series of cuts from the sector under the past five years of coalition government.

“Scott Morrison’s election eve announcement on aged care funding is too little too late,” she said.

“The waiting list for home care has grown to 127,000 older Australians, with many waiting more than a year to receive the care they have been approved for.”

The latest funding boost comes after the government announced $550 million in new funding in December.

AAP

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