Supporting and improving aged care in rural and remote Australia

Senator the Hon Richard Colbeck

Minister for Senior Australians and Aged Care Services, Minister for Sport

The Morrison Government is providing $40 million over two years for multi-purpose residential aged care providers to carry out minor capital works.

In response to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, the capital grant opportunity is another vital step in reinforcing multi-purpose services (MPS) which play an important part in providing care in regional and remote areas.

Minister for Senior Australians and Aged Care Services, Richard Colbeck, said the investment will ensure the care of residents, particularly those in regional and remote areas, remained a priority.

“Australia has 179 MPS in outer regional and remote areas, in all states, the Northern Territory and Norfolk Island, providing health and aged care services to small communities,” Minister Colbeck said.

“Combined these MPS offer 3,688 flexible aged places in either residential aged care or home care settings.

“For the first time since the MPS program started in the 1990s, the Commonwealth will provide capital funding grants for MPS. A co-contribution model will require providers to make a cash or in-kind contribution towards each project.”

The minor works grants will support MPS to provide better services to senior Australians with dementia to remain in their communities, offer a more home-like and comfortable environment, or upgrade their service to allow the delivery of higher intensity care to people with more complex care needs.

Minister Colbeck said rural and remote senior Australians should not have to leave their home community and family to find appropriate care.

“With this funding round we expect to see improvements in the health, safety and wellbeing of aged care recipients,” Minister Colbeck said.

“Along with better services in local communities with an MPS, there will be a focus on delivering important improvements within the facilities, including fewer shared bathroom facilities and improved infection prevention and control, which is vital in the ongoing response to COVID-19.

“The MPS minor capital works grant round, which opens today also supports the new measures announced in the 2021-2022 Budget and the Government’s response to the Royal Commission.

“It is in addition to the $630.2 million announced to make the aged care system more accessible for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and senior Australians who live in regional, rural, and remote communities.”

Applications for the MPS minor capital works grant round must be received on or before 11 August 2021.

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