The Older Persons Advocacy Network (OPAN) has welcomed the Australian Government’s new Star Ratings for residential aged care providers, which were made public today.
‘This nationally consistent benchmark – a key recommendation of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety – will provide greater transparency across the sector,’ OPAN CEO Craig Gear said.
‘Even more importantly, Star Ratings will enable older people and their families to compare quality across residential aged care homes and to make informed choices about where they want to live.’
However, the national peak advocacy organisation has expressed serious concerns for older people currently living in aged care homes that have received a one-star or two-star rating.
‘One in 10 residential aged care homes need to ‘improve’ or ‘significantly improve’ their care and services across issues that include breaches of the code of conduct, misuse of restrictive practices or mishandling serious incidents,’ Mr Gear said.
‘An improvement plan must be urgently put in place for each of these residential aged care homes with oversight by the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission.’
Mr Gear was pleased to see the majority of residential aged care homes had received a three-star rating or higher.
‘But while three stars might well be considered a pass, we expect providers to be actively working towards a four or five-star rating through their continuous improvement plans,’ he said.
‘About 30 per cent of providers have achieved this gold standard, which shows it can be done.
‘All older people are entitled to five-star care.’