“Postcode should not dictate the quality and availability of care for older people.
“More than 165,000 older people live in regional South Australia. Sadly, almost a third of non-compliant reviews against the aged care quality standards over the last 12 months have occurred in our regions.
“It is not good enough. Older people have an expectation that they will be able to live well and safely in their own communities throughout their lives.
“While there is no excuse for poor quality aged care, there is no doubt that finding a quality aged care workforce outside metropolitan Adelaide is getting harder and harder. It is becoming almost impossible to get enough staff with the right training, skills and experience to work in regional aged care.
“This needs a concerted focus from our Federal and State Governments with aged care providers. We must ensure that aged care is a viable and appealing career option in Adelaide and in our regions.
“Despite the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety highlighting this issue, there is a problem on our doorstep right now.
“It is very important that we prevent upheaval in the lives of older people that will result from aged care closures in regional areas. We must also make sure, as the new home care places promised by the Federal Government are rolled out, that we have enough workers in our regions with the right skills to support them.
“Older people have a right to live, and access safe and high-quality care as they need, in their own community.”