The Broome hearing of the Aged Care Royal Commission has been completed and the Perth hearing is now underway, June 24 to 28.
The Broome public hearing inquired into access and inclusion; specifically:
- the unique needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people when it comes to aged care services
- the perspective and experience of people who access aged care in remote areas including family members and carers
- the nature and scope of aged care services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in remote areas
- the barriers to accessing aged care services for people living in remote areas
- the challenges of maintaining an adequately skilled and culturally appropriate workforce
- good practice care models for people living in remote areas.
Themes from the Broome hearing
The hearing heard about a cultural understanding in aged care facilities in regional and remote Australia. One witness said residential care is seen as a death sentence by older Aboriginal people. The need for cultural education to staff was highlighted as essential to building understanding and trust between aged care providers and Indigenous communities.
As is the case in the rest of Australia, the hiring, retention and training of staff was raised as a major issue. Witnesses testified to a distinct shortage of Indigenous people in this workforce.
On top of this, there are specific accessibility and funding challenges in remote communities. Because of these issues, there were calls for a rethink of the model of delivering aged care in regions like the Kimberley.
Has this happened to you or a loved one?
If you or a loved one has been subject to issues relating to access and inclusion restrictive or poor quality care in an aged care facility you can approach the Commission to provide evidence. Our expert, caring health law and elder law team members can also help you to determine if there a case to seek justice or compensation. Making formal complaints or litigating is an effective way to force aged care facilities to change poor practices for you, your loved one, and other people.
The Perth hearing of the Aged Care Royal Commission will inquire into the nature of person-centred care, advanced care planning and palliative care services. It takes place June 24 to 28.