Apr 21, 2023

Federal Aged Care Minister assures Australians of additional funding

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Federal Aged Care Minister Anika Wells expressed sympathy for senior residents who are being forced to leave their homes due to the sudden closure of three Wesley Mission facilities at the end of May. 

Minister Wells stated in an interview with A Current Affair that the organisation cannot close its doors until residents find suitable accommodation elsewhere and that her office is working with Wesley Mission and nearby providers to ensure this occurs.

“My heart goes out to those residents and their families. It’s a tough time for them,” Minister Wells said.

In response to organisations reporting financial stress or difficulty meeting targets, Minister Wells stated that there are grants available and that further reforms are forthcoming to aid providers in delivering 24/7 care. 

She emphasised that taxpayers are funding efforts to improve care standards in Australia and that more beds are opening than being lost across the country.

With concerns that more closures may occur, Minister Wells sought to reassure Australians that additional funding for aged care is expected in the upcoming budget. 

She stressed the need for a broader conversation regarding what citizens are willing to pay for and what they expect their government to do for aged care.

“We need to have a conversation about where people are finding inefficiencies in the system and where they are finding things too difficult,” Minister Wells stated.

Minister Wells believes that reforms implemented two years ago following the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety will enhance care quality and that billions of dollars will be dedicated to enacting these changes. 

She acknowledged that these changes may take some time to take effect, but urged the public to remain hopeful that progress is being made in the realm of aged care.

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