New Aged Care Quality Standards go live
The much-anticipated new Aged Care Quality Standards have been launched and must be fully implemented by 1 July 2019.
The new single Standards, developed in consultation with the aged-care sector, replace the four previous sets of aged-care standards.
They will apply to all aged-care services — including residential care, home care, flexible care and services delivered under the Commonwealth Home Support Program — and are designed to empower senior Australians and ensure responsibility and accountability for their care.
Under the Standards, the boards and governing bodies of aged-care providers will be clearly accountable for every one of their consumers’ safety and quality of care.
Providers delivering clinical care will be mandated to maintain quality clinical frameworks including infection control, open disclosure to consumers, their families and representatives, and minimising the use of restraint.
Providers must work hand in hand with consumers, their families and representatives on the delivery of quality services and the management of their day-to-day care.
The new Aged Care Quality Standards cover:
- consumer dignity and choice
- ongoing assessment and planning with consumers
- personal care and clinical care
- services and support for daily living
- an organisation’s service environment
- feedback and complaints
- human resources
- organisational governance.
Adherence to each Standard requires:
- a statement of outcome for the consumer
- a statement of expectation for the organisation
- requirements to demonstrate the standard has been met.
Under the Standards, quality care provision will be paramount, with aged-care providers required to prove their care and services are safe, effective and focused on their consumers, including through unannounced visits.
The Standards will also promote further competition and market-focused improvements, where consumers drive quality and red tape is reduced for consumers, families and providers.
The transition to the new single set of Aged Care Quality Standards is already underway, with full implementation from 1 July 2019.
The federal government is currently distributing $50 million to residential aged-care providers to support them in transitioning to the new Standards, which will be enforced by the new Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission, which promises a new era of aged-care quality and confidence when it comes into being on 1 January 2019.
Further information on the new Standards is available from the Department of Health’s website.
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