Candidate for Mayo Rebekha Sharkie goes into bat for aged care

STANDING FOR ELDERLY: Candidate for Mayo Rebekha Sharkie wants to boost staffing in aged care through legislation she would introduce if elected. Photo: Michael Simmons.
STANDING FOR ELDERLY: Candidate for Mayo Rebekha Sharkie wants to boost staffing in aged care through legislation she would introduce if elected. Photo: Michael Simmons.

Aged care facilities will have to publish full details about their staffing ratios under legislation that will be introduced by candidate for Mayo Rebekha Sharkie if she wins the upcoming by-election on July 28.

With the backing of her Centre Alliance colleagues in the Senate, Rebekha will push for mandatory publication of staff-to-patient ratios by job description on the Federal Government’s My Aged Care website.

Aged care facilities will have to detail exactly how many registered nurses, clinical nurses, personal care workers, allied health staff and other staff they have rostered per number of residents, with the opportunity to explain the ratio according to client needs.

“My proposed Private Member's Bill will bring transparency to the contentious issue of staffing ratios and help our community make more informed choices when selecting residential care places for their loved ones,” Ms Sharkie said.

“Staffing ratios in aged care facilities are a major concern to people and our community made sure they raised the issue with the Federal Aged Care Minister Ken Wyatt during his visit to our region last month.”

Mayo is the oldest electorate in South Australia; one in five residents in the community is over 65.

 Ms Sharkie is also working with colleagues to improve training qualifications of personal care workers in the aged care sector. “It will be a significant challenge.”

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