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Caring for Carers: attending to their needs so they can attend to others

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There can be no aged care without carers. The personal care workers and nursing staff who front up every day are, obviously enough, the backbone of the entire enterprise.

However the 2018 Report of Commonwealth Aged Care Workforce Strategy highlights significant stresses faced by this workforce. ‘Crisis’ may be too strong a word, but the Taskforce heard anecdotal evidence suggesting that ‘unplanned vacancies, absenteeism and impact of staff turnover could be between 15 and 25 per cent [of] staff vacancies. This amounts to understaffing, meaning that current organisations’ workforce mixes are stretched’ (p. 91). The work is made no easier by the fact that aged care sector roles at all levels are paid, on average, within the bottom quartile, by comparison to similar work in other sectors (p. 92).

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Source:
Unknown Author, 2019, Australian Ageing Agenda (https://www.australianageingagenda.com.au/)

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