Aged care centres in abuse crackdown
ON-THE-SPOT checks of aged care homes in Victoria will more than triple next year.
Unannounced audits by the new Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission will jump from 67 this year to at least 255 next year, and nationally from 263 to almost 900.
Last month the Herald Sun revealed that reports of physical assaults and sexual attacks in Victoria's aged-care centres had soared in recent years, to almost three a day.
The new commission will have a four-year budget of almost $300 million and will employ dozens more senior compliance officers.
On top of the accreditation audits, there will be thousands of unannounced inspections nationally, to ensure compliance with particular standards and to address risk factors and complaints.
Federal Aged Care Minister Ken Wyatt said an overhaul of the sector would continue as the royal commission into the industry was taking place.
He said Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission chief Janet Anderson would report directly to him.
"The new Commission is a key part of the Australian Government's response to the recommendations of the Carnell-Paterson review of failures at the Oakden Older Persons Mental Health Service in South Australia. A Bill to establish the Commission is currently in Parliament," Mr Wyatt said.
"Ms Anderson will oversee the approval, accreditation, assessment, complaints resolution, monitoring and compliance of Commonwealth-funded aged care providers, reporting directly to the Minister for Senior Australians and Aged Care.
"Her appointment and the independent Commission will help usher in a new era in certainty, accountability and confidence in aged care in Australia."
There will be $48.2 million to expand monitoring and compliance teams, continue unannounced inspections, and better identify centres providing sub-standard care.
The commission will be a one-stop shop for aged care providers and residents and their families to complain.