Aged Care Sector Committee - Communiqué (13 April 2015)
The Aged Care Sector Committee met in Melbourne for its fifth meeting on Monday, 13 April 2015.
The Assistant Minister for Social Services, Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield, attended the first part of this meeting to discuss with the Committee their work in advising the Government on proposed changes to help the aged care system evolve to meet the needs of Australia’s ageing population.
Minister Fifield welcomed Mr David Tune, AO PSM as the new independent Chair of the Committee. The Minister noted Mr Tune’s financial expertise and previous experience, as one of Australia’s most distinguished public servants. He outlined how Mr Tune’s leadership provides a fabulous opportunity to help guide the aged care change agenda.
The Committee discussed the next steps in promoting the Aged Care Sector Statement of Principles as a guide to future changes to the aged care system. The Committee noted that while the Principles provided the overarching vision for aged care, further work was needed to develop and document the strategies to achieve this vision. This is work that will be undertaken by the Committee and the Department in the coming months.
Members also discussed a number of other issues including: possible opportunities created by the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement; introduction of income tested home care fees for home care packages; usage of My Aged Care by consumers and providers; and the work being undertaken to support transition to the 1 July 2015 changes.
The Committee will next convene in late May 2015 to discuss budget initiatives relevant to aged care.