Mar 06, 2018

Reflecting on quality in aged care and evolving expectations, hear from industry leaders

Ian Yates AM, CEO COTA Australia interviews keynote speakers Amy Laffan, Assistant Secretary of the Aged Care Quality and Regulatory Reform Branch and Andrea Coote, Chair, Aged Care Quality Advisory Council from the Criterion Conference Quality in Aged Care #agedcarequality18

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  1. Over 200 years ago Adam Smith wrote “The learned ignore the evidence of their senses to preserve the coherence of the ideas of their imagination”. These industry advocates are deaf to what critics and the data showing deficient staffing are revealing. They are pressing on with a reform process that is not working and cannot work because the reforms they describe are the cause of the problems.

    Both government and industry should be responsible to citizens – the communities whose role in a civilised society is to be responsible citizens and so support their members. The community should be there for them in their time of need. At the senate hearing in Adelaide families called out for just someone independent to be there for them when they needed support and that is a core problem across the sector. Government and market are incapable of regulating a system like this or of providing that support. At both the Senate and House of Representatives inquiries the Agency and the Department adopted a ‘hands off’ approach and refused to take any responsibility for their failures. We cannot depend on them.

    Regulation, oversight and resident support should be moved into local communities and include local citizens. This oversight could be built around an empowered local visitors scheme working in each community and with providers to collect data and monitor standards transparently. Citizens would be in a position to support residents, see what was happening, confirm it with data and then put direct and immediate pressure on poor performance and support those who actually care about (and for) their staff and residents.

    Competitive markets, which by their very nature are predatory, work when real people in a real world with real power deal directly and promptly with real issues in the marketplace. We recognize that services for indigenous communities work when they have control over the way services provided in their communities yet we deny this to other Australians. Aged Care Crisis is pressing for a system that treats all groups equally!

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