Aged Care and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2021
This submission responds to the Aged Care and Other Legislation Amendment (Royal Commission Response No.2) Bill 2021 under review by the Senate Standing Committee on Community Affairs. The submission provides comment on Schedules 2, 3 and 4 of the Bill that establish a national registration scheme for aged care workers and a code of conduct for approved providers and aged care workers and extends incident management and reporting to home care and flexible care. PCA supports the introduction of a national registration scheme for the personal care workforce as per the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety’s (Royal Commission) recommendation, including exploring the scheme being administered by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA). However, the Bill does not adequately address the Royal Commission’s recommendations and should include minimum qualifications, ongoing training, minimum levels of English language proficiency and the power for an appropriate registering body to investigate complaints and take disciplinary action. PCA also supports the introduction of a code of conduct for approved providers, however, believes that workers would be better covered by an expansive national registration scheme. PCA supports the extension of incidence management and reporting as this will ensure that those receiving care in both home care and flexible care are protected against incidents of violence or abuse.