Australia is facing a shortfall of 16,000 nurses and 25,000 allied health workers in the aged care sector by 2033, new research reveals. Source: The Australian.
A new model created by a coalition of academics from the University of Melbourne, University of the Sunshine Coast and Monash University shows the nation is on track to experience crippling workforce shortages in the aged care sector if the government fails to act.
The Australian revealed a further 16 aged care facilities have closed down between June and October this year with Labor’s stringent nursing reforms placing intense strain on the sector.
The closures come despite escalating demand in the sector as Australia’s population ages, with the Albanese Government’s latest intergenerational report projecting life expectancy continuing to increase and placing more demand on government-funded services.
At least 47 aged care homes have shut their doors since September last year, according to figures from the Department of Health and Aged Care, as the sector grapples with Labor’s staffing reforms including 24/7 mandatory registered nurses and minimum care requirements.
The sector is scrambling to implement a suite of reforms including mandated minutes of care per resident, quality and safety standards, and full-time nursing requirements as it adjusts to a new funding model brought in last October as recommended by the aged care royal commission.
Aged Care Minister Anika Wells said the Albanese Government had invested a historic $11.3 billion for a 15 per cent wage rise for aged care workers which was expected to deliver more than 10,000 workers for the sector in 2023-24.
Opposition health and aged care spokeswoman Anne Ruston said Labor “promised they would put the care back into aged care, but they are turning a blind eye as aged care providers’ struggle to keep their doors open under stringent new regulations”.
Staffing reforms trigger surge in aged care shutdowns (By Jess Malcolm, The Australian)