WHAT ABOUT US: Leading Age Services Australia CEO Sean Rooney said the country needed an aged care system that ensured seniors got the care they needed.
WHAT ABOUT US: Leading Age Services Australia CEO Sean Rooney said the country needed an aged care system that ensured seniors got the care they needed. Bev Lacey

Aged care bodies divided on promises to fix sector

AUSTRALIA'S peak aged care body has welcomed calls to address critical issues facing the sector but says it is still wary about how they will be delivered.

Labor announced earlier this week that a registered nurse would be on site 24 hours a day at all residential aged-care centres if it was elected.

The party also promised to investigate all interventions to ensure the needs of older Australians were met.

Leading Age Services Australia CEO Sean Rooney said the country needed an aged care system that ensured seniors got the care they needed.

"With a forecast $154 billion in savings over the next decade, we would have preferred fully costed responses to the solutions we have put forward to make the aged care system better," Mr Rooney said.

"However, we welcome Bill Shorten's commitment that he will take decisive action if elected next Saturday.

Mr Rooney said safety and quality in aged care were not negotiable and were the sector's highest priority.

However, he said he was still concerned about the financial crisis facing aged care providers and said they needed to be "adequately resourced" to meet the standards of quality needed in the sector.

In contrast, National Seniors chief advocate Ian Henschke said neither of the two major parties had committed additional funding to fix "Australia's aged care mess".

Mr Henschke said home care needed a minimum of an extra $2 billion a year to provide better care.

"Older Australians can't afford to wait for the Royal Commission's recommendations," he said.



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