A federal funding boost for nurses and care workers has pushed more aged care homes into the black, but just over half continue to operate at a loss. Source: The Australian.
And nursing home operators continue to lose significant money in providing everyday living and accommodation services for residents, a new report finds, bolstering the case for a likely policy change to make wealthier older Australians contribute more from their own pockets to the cost of aged care.
The latest quarterly financial analysis of the sector by specialist aged care accountants StewartBrown reveals increased government support for nursing home care has pushed the sector to an average marginal surplus of 89c per bed per day in the three months to September, compared to a $21.29 per bed day loss in the same quarter in 2022.
And just over 50 per cent of nursing homes operated at a loss in the September quarter compared to 70 per cent a year ago, the survey of almost 1200 aged care facilities from around the country has found.
But there is some concern that the good financials might be a “transitional benefit” due to aged care operators being funded between July and September to meet new minimum care minute requirements, but those requirements only becoming mandatory from October.
Report author Grant Corderoy said the new data shows the benefit of increased federal funding into nursing and personal care, but many operators remained under considerable financial pressure.
Aged care is a federal responsibility and one of the Commonwealth Government’s top five spending programs.
An aged care taskforce commissioned by the Albanese Government completed its work in December, and a final report is due to be released in the next few weeks.
Half of nursing homes are still in the red, report finds (By Stephen Lunn, The Australian)