federal budget aged care

This year’s Federal Budget allocates more than $12.4 billion to aged care and health, marking a substantial increase in funding compared to other sectors.

PainChek welcomes the significant investment which will improve the delivery of aged care, support AI and dementia-specific initiatives, and enable the implementation of several recommendations from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.

PainChek CEO and Managing Director, Philip Daffas said

“The Australian Government’s significant investment in aged care and health serves as a strong indicator of the need for better funding.

This year’s Federal Budget is representative of a shift around the world to invest more in social care; we’ve seen this most recently from the UK Government. This commitment is helping the sector withstand economic pressures faced by other industries, whilst also addressing social and health challenges identified by the Covid-19 pandemic and Royal Commission.

The funding is an important step towards improving care for older people, allowing them greater freedom of choice and transitioning care into the home environment where technologies like PainChek can play a significant role. This is good news for the consumer and healthcare technology companies that are dedicated to facilitating this.

We look forward to working with the Government to ensure PainChek plays its role to help improve quality of care and clinical outcomes.”

The total amount allocated towards health and aged care in the 2023-24 financial year is $139.2 billion, a $5.6 billion increase from the previous budget. Over the next four years, a total of $589 billion will be allocated to health and aged care, a $42 billion increase from the previous budget.

Key highlights in the 2023-24 budget

  • $11.3 billion over four years starting from 1 July 2023 will fund a 15% pay increase for over 250,000 aged care workers. This is the largest pay increase ever for aged care workers in the history of the Fair Work Act and is expected to help providers attract and retain skilled staff, meet the requirements for increased care minutes, and have a registered nurse on duty 24/7.
  • An additional $166.8 million will be provided for 9,500 Home Care Packages, which will enable more older people to live at home.
  • A $72.3 million investment will support the development of a new regulatory framework and prudential model for aged care providers. The new model will
    • Require residential aged care services to provide residents with Monthly Care Statements on care provided and occurrences of significant change.
    • Enable continuous improvement and enhance Star Ratings for older Australians and work to expand the Quality Indicator program to in-home care services ($139.9 million).
  • Aged care recipients will have greater choice and control in decision-making through the development of systems that will help them to choose their provider ($41.3m).
  • The Disability Support for Older Australians program will be extended with $487 million. Older people with disabilities will benefit from the delivery of consistent, timely, and high-quality disability services so they can live in their homes and communities.
  • The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Flexible Aged Care Program will receive increased funding ($77.3m) to ensure First Nations elders access high-quality, culturally safe care. The Government will build the capacity of Aboriginal Controlled Organisations to ensure Country services ($8.2m). An interim First Nations Aged Care Commissioner will be appointed ($1.6m).
  • $112 million has been allocated to improve the frequency of visits, health assessments, and care planning for aged care recipients through incentive payments to GPs and primary care clinics. This incentive triples for GPs in rural and remote areas to maintain access to health services for older people in these communities.
  • $98.2 million will enable longer GP consultations, and support the diagnosis experience and ongoing disease management for people living with dementia, their families, and carers.
  • $101.2 million will support businesses to integrate artificial intelligence (AI) technology to improve their business processes and increase competitiveness.

To date, PainChek has facilitated over 2.5 million clinical assessments in aged care, enabling best-practice pain management across more than 1,970 facilities worldwide.

To learn more about how PainChek® could enable best-practice pain management within your organisation, book a one-on-one session with a member of our team.

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