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Provider Institute: Exposure Draft Aged Care Act Now Open for Consultation

On 14 December 2023, the Department of Health and Aged Care released the Exposure Draft for the proposed Bill to introduce a new Aged Care Act


As a provider of Aged Care services, you’re probably aware that this new Act is part of a raft of changes being put forward in response to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, including the already released Aged Care Quality Standards due to take effect in 2024. It will also align with the Support @ Home program which will replace the Home Care Packages (HCP) Programme and Short-Term Restorative Care (STRC) Programme from 1 July 2025, and the Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP) planned for 1 July 2027. 


The proposed rights-based Aged Care Act will cover the way services are delivered to older people in:

  • their homes

  • community settings

  • approved residential aged care homes


Some key highlights include:

  • The Objects (purpose) of the Act are to:

  • put older people at the centre

  • have a clear reference to the Statement of Rights

  • have sustainable funding with support provided by a diverse, skilled and experienced workforce. 

  • Registered providers of aged care services must not act in a way that is incompatible with the Statement the Rights.

  • Providers of aged care services must be registered according to categories based on risk (Level 1 being lowest risk and Level 6 being highest risk with some adjustments from the initially drafted levels). 

  • Existing Approved Providers will be auto-enrolled into their relevant Categories from June 2024 (with consultation)

  • New providers will need to register to become approved according to the new categories from 30 June 2024

  • Continuity of Care to remain with existing providers for care recipients

  • The introduction of Associated Providers - a provider that can deliver services for a registered provider (and don’t have to be registered themselves). Note that the registered provider would hold responsibility for any associated providers they use.

  • Access and assessment processes for older people receiving funding (and those seeking funding) will be streamlined

  • More powers for the Aged Care regulator as well as new civil and criminal penalties (still in development)


Want to comment on the Draft?

The most effective way to put forward concerns and suggestions for the proposed Aged Care Act is to participate in the Consultation period. Consultation is open now until 16 February 2024. More information about how you can get involved with the consultation process is available on the Department of Health and Aged Care’s website at https://www.health.gov.au/our-work/aged-care-act/consultation 


While there are still more questions than answers, what is known is that changes are coming and Aged Care Providers will need to be prepared for how these impact their services. 


Through our Watch.Read.Do updates, Provider Institute of Australia focuses on keeping abreast of these changes, understanding what they mean and providing you with a simple checklist of things to implement relevant to your services. For more detailed information about what these changes mean for you, visit us at www.providerinstitute.au



1800 960 742




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