Home' Australian Ageing Agenda : AAA Jan-Feb 2013 Contents elected government to govern, I
am equally passionate about our
right to contribute as an industry
by thought-leadership. LASA and
our members are ideally placed to
play that role, and we will do so.
A SIX-POINT LIST
We will see six key decisions,
which will collectively shape
much about the first phase of
journey to June 2014.
Firstly, the changes to the
Aged Care Funding Instrument
(ACFI). Data for July and August
is now available, with September
data available mid-December.
The trends are not yet clear as
the ACFI assessments in June,
prior to the changes, was nearly
50 per cent higher than the
monthly average, and then July
and August below average. Soon
the real impact of these changes
will start to become clear.
refurbishment', Aged Care
Financing Authority (ACFA)
has provided its advice to the
Minister, with his decision due
very soon. LASA's view is ACFA
has not taken into consideration
how many providers are affected,
particularly the 40 per cent ratio
for supported payments.
Thirdly, the decision about
accommodation payments is
of fundamental importance
across the residential care
sector. LASA's position is clear
-- government must resist the
temptation to take a 'regulatory'
approach to price setting;
rather allowing industry to set
accommodation prices, publish
them openly, and provide funding
to support the vulnerable and
Fourthly, the significant shift
to 'consumer-directed care' in
the roll out of the 2012 Aged
Care Approvals Round (ACAR)
for home care packages. This
will over time have an enormous
impact in allowing consumers
greater choice and input -- it will
be a genuine empowerment
measure for older Australians, and
in time will influence the nature of
service delivery in residential care.
Fifthly, the importance of
allowing flexibility for providers
to charge additional fees for
extra hotel and lifestyle services
in residential care as well as a
suite of services in the home care
setting. As we have regularly
stated, our aim is to have this
initiative brought forward from July
2014 one whole year to July 2013.
And sixthly there is the wages
compact. 2013 will be a very busy
year for age care reform, starting
off the year with the significant
changes, which are proposed to
the Aged Care Act to give effect to
the LLLB reforms. Not surprisingly
the tabling of the draft legislation
will trigger major advocacy on
behalf of our members. n
Follow Gerard Mansour on
Industry view LASA
The throes of change
Last year was coined the year of reform. Now there's a new aged
care catchcry in circulation: 2012-2022, 'the decade of reform'.
Gerard Mansour explains how the sector is in the midst of
historic long-term change. But, he writes, there's six key factors that
will determine how we'll retrospectively rate this period.
Gerard Mansour, CEO, Leading
Age Services Australia (LASA)
WITH THE AGED care reform
process is well underway, I am
pleased to say LASA is well
through the establishment phase.
Our national and state boards, and
state LASA associations are now
making an enormous contribution.
LASA is well and truly here -- and
we are having an impact.
Over coming years we will
continually find one statement
comes back to us time and
time again --"united we stand
and divided we fall". Our policy
challenge will continue to be
taking the time to consider
solutions, which meet the needs
of our entire industry. If we as an
industry do not do that, someone
else, typically government, will
make those decisions for us.
I believe we are now on a new
journey, which I characterise as 'a
decade of reform'. Our industry
has matured significantly since the
reforms of the late 1990s, and we
are now on the cusp of changes
which will be equally important.
I think of this journey ahead
in three discreet phases. The
first phase will be primarily, but
not soley driven by the reform
agenda priorities to June 2014.
This phase will encompass one
more federal budget and then
a federal election. The second
phase of reform as the lead up
to the five-year review point in
2017 the current government
announced under its Living
Longer. Living Better reform. And
the third phase is the 10 year
stopping point -- 2022.
No matter who wins
government next year, we are now
in a new decade of reform. The
real question moving forward is:
"how do we ensure a viable and
flourishing industry for all older
Australians who will need our care,
services and support?" While I am
passionate about the right of an
"Our industry has matured
significantly since the
reforms of the late 1990s,
and we are now on the
cusp of changes which will
be equally important."
22 | JANUARY -- FEBRUARY 2013 | AAA
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