Catholic Health wants Govt to fund action against abuse

Catholic Health Australia head Francis Sullivan has said the Federal Government must be willing to pour more money into the troubled aged care sector in order to curb the problem of abuse in nursing homes.

AAP reports that supporters of mandatory reporting say that fear and intimidation will continue in Australia's nursing homes until the government takes more decisive action to stamp out elderly abuse.

Federal cabinet is set to consider tougher laws to protect older Australians in aged care facilities, including police background checks on all workers and random checks on homes.

The plan was discussed at an emergency meeting of the government's advisory committee on aged care in Canberra on Tuesday.

But the committee was split on the issue of forcing people to report assaults following allegations of sexual abuse against four women in a Victorian nursing home last year.

"Ultimately the quality of care that can be delivered in aged care is determined by the funding those facilities receive from the government," Mr Sullivan told ABC radio.

"It is a partnership here, that's why we say to the minister we support you here because we expect support on the other side of the equation.

"We expect funding to deliver a quality care product."

Call for more debate on abuse reporting (Sydney Morning Herald/Australian Associated Press 15/3/06)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Catholic Health Australia

Catholic Health backs power for Minister to address scandal (CathNews 22/2/06)

Aged-care staff face police inquiries, random checks for nursing homes (The Australian 15/3/06)
Aged care summit to focus on abuse issue (Sydney Morning Herald/Australian Associated Press 13/3/06)

16 Mar 2006