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Catholic Health wants better organisation of Community Care

Catholic Health Australia has welcomed the Commonwealth's consultation paper, A New Strategy for Community Care as it signals a long awaited acknowledgement that reform is essential and urgently required.

"Care for people in the community is inadequate, disorganised and relies on the goodwill and sacrifice of volunteers, families and carers," said CHA's CEO Francis Sullivan. "The Commonwealth proposes a national framework when what is required is a sound national system.

"Our hope is that governments agree to establish a system of community care services, not perpetuate the patchwork of poorly funded programs where people fall through the cracks and families and carers are placed under enormous strain.

"We endorse the aspirations of this strategy but caution that community care must be integrated into effective health and social service systems. To do otherwise will only result in community care remaining as a poor cousin of the health and residential aged care system.

CHA has proposed a series of reforms which it claims would better meet the needs of individuals, provide appropriate accountability for the community and expand the capacity to meet the growing demand from an ageing population.

"In the end, the Commonwealth should be prepared to take full responsibility for community care if after twelve months we still have little reform and no real moves to a national system of care."

Catholic Health Australia

A new strategy for community care (media release, Hon Kevin Andrews, Minister for Ageing)
Catholic Health Australia

31 Mar 2003