NewsHow to Approach Aged Care

How to Approach Aged Care

I was once asked to sum up Australia’s aged care system in 500 words and I failed. If you thought electricity, superannuation or NBN plans were complicated wait until you try and navigate this particular market.

Aged care, whether we like it or not, at some stage becomes not just a choice but a necessity, and my take is to deal with it as you might any other consumer service and find out your best options.

Given there is a lot more at stake, in this arena than in signing on for a particular gas tariff, leaving it too late, avoiding the inevitable and denying increasing frailty come at the risk of significant extra costs be they financial or any other kind. 

The current Aged Care Royal Commission should lift the lid on some of the murkier practices, which have dogged this area given we as a society tended to shy away from its less pleasant realities.

The terms of reference mean the commission will examine the quality of services and the extent of substandard and abusive care. Importantly from the consumer lens, it will also ensure these services are more ‘person-centred’ and allow all of us greater control, independence and choice.

Rather like the bank royal commission, we shouldn’t let the avalanche of bad news stories let us assume all is rotten in the state of aged care. There are players which are far better than others…the trick is to find them. 

Your first step might be to check out the federal government’s MyAgedCare which says it’s the starting point for finding out about the Australia’s state funded services or check out a comparison service which seek to rate nursing homes, retirement villages and home care.

In short, aged care is best approached one step at a time.

It is changing as baby boomers demand something different to the stale stereotypes of nursing homes of old (and too many now).

Not all of us will be supermen and women who have perfect health and capacity until the very end in differing degrees, as we live longer, we are likely to need some degree of aged care.

Start thinking about it now and be part of the change in consumer demand for these services, i.e. more discriminating, more empowered, more competition/transparency.

It can only make the sector better.

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How to Approach Aged Care

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Yvonne from QLD commented:

At long last the federal goverment have listened to some members of the public, the federal health minister has achieved the impossible and now all nursing homes will not be informed when they will be visited by the appropient authorities, I have endeavoured for years to get this act dealt with ,now I sincerely hope that in some nursiing homes things will be so much better and that there guests will be happy and well looked after, no more harsh treatment etc from the few nursing homes that have got away with this attitude for years,Thankyou to the health minister The Hon Ken Wyatt Am,Mp. Yvonne, Queensland 

Julie from QLD commented:

It's true, you cannot generalise older age. Humans do not have brackets when it comes to life situations we deal with.utter rubbish this government system it does not work whilst employing lots of public servants who may never have the knowledge & life experience of many who are at the receiving end of the system. The system is infantile & unfair. 

Joye from QLD commented:

Well Rodney, at least with no property to sell I won't have your first cost worry. But at 80 (and no health insurance)I'm having to leave my long-term rural rental property. It's been way the cheapest available. Now with no capital to buy and only Centrelink income what can I afford? Where do I go? What do I do? Ironically I spent my life providing accomodation for orphans, disadvantaged youth and a home away from home for countless others. I always thought 'do unto others' was a reciprocal thing. Greed and self-serving is destroying our society. Don't vote for such political candidates. 

Rodney from NSW commented:

At 82 can I say you dont know the half of it We downsized 2 years ago and paid out just on $60000 to do so --half in stamp duty and we are pensioners on a full pension Then operations one for a pace maker $23500 which our private insurance thankfully covered Our small savings Account is going down at a rate of knots and they give us hardly no interest Old folks are vunerable to every hard nosed politician who knows he can squeeze just that bit more out of us because we havent got much more time on this planet and we cant take it with us Compassion ,empathy call it what you want is totally lacking in the younger generations of this country Grumpy from BOOKER BAY 

Andrew from SA replied to Rodney:

Spot on Rodney. I am quite a few years behind you and I can see the same thing now. Hope you are well and things are getting that little bit easier for you. 

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