Elderly residents need more nurses

Monday 22nd February, 2010

The aged care sector needs an injection of funds because the hard working nurses and personal carers workloads are becoming unmanageable, said Australian Nursing Federation Acting Federal Secretary Lee Thomas.

“Residents are forced to wait long periods for care and this situation will only worsen as the population ages.”

“As part of the Because We Care campaign, the ANF has a four point plan to address these issues and ensure Australia has a high quality aged care sector.

“Firstly, we need to halt the exodus of Registered and Enrolled nurses from aged care and ensure our nursing homes have the right mix of staff to get the job done by introducing a minimum staffing ratio.

“Secondly, we need to lift skill levels across the board, from nurses to personal carers by ensuring there is a minimum qualification requirement and a well structured career path for nurses and personal carers.

“Thirdly, to get more people into the industry and to hold onto the excellent staff we already have, we need to increase pay.

“And finally, we need make sure that any extra funding from the Federal Government flows through to aged care staff so they can deliver the best care possible - that means proper acquittal processes for aged care funding."