Senate to Investigate Young People in Nursing Homes
9 December 2014 at 10:14 am
The Young People In Nursing Homes National Alliance (YPINH) has welcomed the announcement of a new Senate inquiry into the adequacy of residential care for young people with disability, including young people living in aged care facilities.
“We are pleased indeed to see a renewed focus on this enduring problem,” YPINH Director, Dr Bronwyn Morkham said.
“The Community Affairs Committee of the Senate has looked at this issue previously, but with moves towards the full roll-out of the NDIS, the resolution of the young people in nursing homes issue is now more important than ever.”
The NFP says that over 6000 young Australians live in aged care nursing homes across the country with many more in the community at increasing risk of placement in residential aged care.
The Alliance congratulated WA Liberal Senator Linda Reynolds on her initiative in getting the Inquiry underway.
“The Young People in Residential Aged Care initiative (YPIRAC) that ran from 2006-2011 certainly shone a light on this issue and did make some progress. But this has not been sustained and this impacts directly on young people with disability caught without appropriate care and support,” Dr Morkham said.
“The Senate Inquiry will give us an opportunity to consider how mainstream programs like health and aged care, must collaborate and connect to the NDIS to deliver the community based supports and services the YPINH group need.
“We must also examine how the States and Territories are addressing the YPINH issue in the lead up to full roll-out of the NDIS.
“We look forward to working with the Senate Committee to identify the real solutions that young people and their families are hungry for, and which the disability and aged care systems require.”
On 3 December 2014, the Senate referred the issue of young people in nursing homes to the Community Affairs References Committee for inquiry.
The inquiry will look at the adequacy of existing residential care arrangements available for young people with severe physical, mental or intellectual disabilities in Australia.
The Terms of Reference are:
the estimated number and distribution of young people in care in the aged care system in Australia, and the number of young people who require care but are not currently receiving care;
short- and long-term trends in relation to the number of young people being cared for within the aged care system;
the health and support pathways available to young people with complex needs;
the appropriateness of the aged care system for care of young people with serious and/or permanent mental or physical disabilities;
alternative systems of care available in federal, state and territory jurisdictions for young people with serious and/or permanent mental, physical or intellectual disabilities;
the options, consequences and considerations of the de-institutionalisation of young people with serious and/or permanent mental, physical or intellectual disabilities;
what Australian jurisdictions are currently doing for young people with serious and/or permanent mental, physical or intellectual disabilities, and what they intend to do differently in the future;
the impact of the introduction of the National Disability Insurance Scheme on the ability of young people in aged care facilities to find more appropriate accommodation;
state and territory activity in regard to the effectiveness of the Council of Australian Governments’ Younger People in Residential Aged Care initiatives in improving outcomes for young people with serious and/or permanent mental, physical or intellectual disabilities, since the Commonwealth’s contribution to this program has been rolled into the National Disability Agreement and subsequent developments in each jurisdiction; and
any related matters.
The committee is to report by 30 June 2015. Submissions are invited by 6 February 2015, however the committee says it has agreed to continue accepting submissions past this date.
Submission information can be found here.