LASA Calls on Government to Reduce Burden on Homecare Providers

By Petrina Smith
Wednesday, 18 June, 2014

[caption id="attachment_8379" align="alignright" width="133"]LASA CEO Patrick Reid LASA CEO Patrick Reid[/caption]
Leading Age Services Australia (LASA) the peak body for age service providers is putting the government on notice saying ongoing incompetence is creating considerably more administrative burden on homecare providers.
“10 months after the introduction of a new homecare payment system (administered by the Department of Human Services) service providers face an accounting nightmare; exacerbated by the fast approaching end of financial year.” said Patrick Reid CEO of LASA
“The new system became operational in October last year. Initially providers remained unpaid, with many facing extreme difficulty in paying staff over Christmas, some providers were owed millions in back payments.” “LASA has continued to work with DHS and the Minister’s office and payments started to be processed. Now LASA members inform us that they are receiving payments without any identification, creating serious issues for businesses as they face their annual audit post June 30.
“LASA is perplexed as to how this system incompetence can meet the Government’s Red Tape Reduction Agenda supposedly developed to increase efficiency and enhance service delivery administration.”
"Considering age services is the most regulated industry it is difficult to accept such high level, and continued, systems failure preventing service providers from reconciling their own financial records at such a critical time for audit preparation.” “LASA is committed to working with government to rectify this issue urgently, preventing the possibility of providers receiving qualified external audits.”
“Three-quarters of a million older Australians receive homecare from 3660 providers, with an expenditure in 2014-15 of $1.4 billion. Considering this expenditure and the number of Older Australians affected it is critical that the system is both efficient and effective, it is currently neither.”

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