Senators standing up for our elderly residents

ANMF media release September 11, 2018

The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) has thanked those Federal Senators who stood up for elderly Australians by supporting a Bill aimed at ensuring safe, quality care is provided to our vulnerable nursing home residents.

The Aged Care (Single Quality Framework) Reform Bill 2018 was introduced into Parliament yesterday. Senator Derryn Hinch moved the Amendment, calling for mandated ratios for registered nurses (RN) and carers in all nursing homes across the country.

As part of his investigations into aged care, Senator Hinch said he had met aged care nurses who had been troubled that residents in nursing homes had been “neglected” because chronic understaffing meant that nurses did not have the time “to do their job”.

“We are continuing to hear the same stories from our members working in nursing homes, that the lack of nurses and suitably-trained care workers means that their ability to provide basic care, such as feeding and bathing is being severely compromised,” ANMF Assistant Federal Secretary, Lori-Anne Sharp, said today.

“Our Federal Government is allowing this to happen by not ensuring safe levels of staff. Without mandated staffing ratios, aged care providers are free to determine staffing levels. Sadly, on many occasions profits have come before care. This is unacceptable and our vulnerable elderly deserve better.”

Senator Hinch named a long-list of fellow Senators and MPs who had publically pledged their support for the ANMF’s Time for Ruby aged care campaign and said over 230,000 people had put their name to a petition (Mandate aged care staff/resident ratios. Stop the neglect).

“On behalf of our members, nursing home residents and their families, we thank Senator Hinch and those Senators including The Australian Greens, The Centre Alliance and Senator Storer who stood up for elderly Australians by voting to make ratios law,” Ms Sharp said.

“The ANMF is determined to fix the crisis in aged care. We commend the growing list of Senators and MPs who have personally pledged their support for the urgent need to mandate staffing ratios – it will be front and centre of our campaigning in the lead up to the federal election.”

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