The Aged Care Workforce in Australia Position Paper Released

By Petrina Smith
Thursday, 02 April, 2015

Aged and Community Services Australia (ACSA)'s latest position paper The Aged Care Workforce in Australia  says future challenges lie not in finding more workers but in developing new staffing models.
The Aged Care Workforce in Australia paper calls for a specific Budget allocation for sector-wide leadership development; national and regional staffing projections, including the contribution made by support and administrative staff, based on population data; the impact of emerging models of care on work patterns and the diversity of work roles; action plans for improving attraction, recruitment and retention in aged care; and key partnerships and initiatives for building a skilled, modern and diverse age care workforce.
ACSA CEO Adj Prof John G Kelly said:  "With Australia's older population growing in number and age there is a 2.5 per cent projected growth of aged care workers every year until 2050, but providers are already having difficulty filling vacancies, especially in rural and regional locations.
"The current aged care reforms with its requirement to provide all home care packages on a consumer directed care (CDC) basis from July 2015 mean that the challenge of developing the future aged care workforce is not simply about finding more workers but finding new staffing models and ways of delivering new staffing models.
"Given the significance of ageing and aged care spending in the Federal Budget, it is crucial that government and industry work together to ensure that Australia retains a flexible, responsive, high quality and sustainable aged care system," Mr Kelly said
Based on the projections for service growth to 2023, it is estimated that there will need to be an additional 55,770 FTE care workers (37,620 in residential aged care and 18,150 in community aged care) over the decade from 2013 to 2023.
The Aged Care Workforce in Australia paper shows that the current workforce is  gender-biased with an 89 per cent female workforce in residential care and more than 90 per cent in community care. Positively it is a rich and diverse multicultural workforce.

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