The Australian Government has to announce the new and returning members for the Aged Care Council of Elders.
Following the Council’s productive initial term, applications were sought from older people with strong connections in their local communities and lived experience of aged care and after a rigorous selection process, seven new members will be commencing in January 2024.
The Council of Elders provides a direct voice to the Government about aged care reform and ageing well on behalf of older people.
The announcement comes a day after the Federal Government released the exposure draft of the new Aged Care Act which is open to feedback from aged care advocates, providers, residents, their family members, and staff until February 2024.
Anne Burgess AM remains as Council Chair and is joined by new members:
Returning members are:
Gwenda Darling, an aged care advocate living with dementia, said she was honoured to have been reappointed to the Council of Elders at a time when the sector is undergoing immense reform. She plans to advocate for ensuring human rights are embedded in the new Aged Care Act.
“If I was in hospital, possibly blocking a bed people urgently needed, I would be able to access necessary medication. Adequate funded transport, dental and allied health services for all home care package recipients in rural areas is another of my priorities will be continuing to fight for.”
Aged Care Minister Anika Wells thanked all outgoing members for their contributions and said she was particularly looking forward to the insights gained from James Carey who lives in an aged care home to gain realistic insights into the services provided.
“Council members represent a diverse range of perspectives, which is critical to ensuring government hears the voices of diverse communities and regional and remote older people as we reform aged care,” she said.
Appointed members are geographically and demographically diverse, ensuring the voices of a wide range of older people can be heard through the Council.
For more information, visit the Department of Health and Aged Care’s website here.