Volunteering Australia responds to the Effectiveness of the Aged Care Quality Assessment and Accreditation Framework

Volunteering Australia have provided a response to the Senate Standing Committee on Community Affairs on the Effectiveness of the Aged Care Quality Assessment and accreditation framework for protecting residents from abuse and poor practices, and ensuring proper clinical and medical care standards are maintained and practised.

Volunteering Australia have provided a submission after the inquiry was referred to the Committee in response to reported incidents in the Makk and McLeay Aged Mental Health Care Service at Oakden in South Australia.

Volunteering Australia have made a number of recommendations,  emphasising the importance of supporting the volunteering workforce through the Aged Care Quality Assessment and Accreditation Framework given their essential role in residential settings.

These recommendations are provided in recognition of the invaluable social and economic contributions that volunteers make to the aged care workforce. This includes a 2017 Senate inquiry report into the Future of Australia’s aged care sector workforce highlighting that “there are five volunteers for every paid worker in the not-for-profit sector, at a value of about $290 billion per annum. In 2016, 23,537 volunteers provided 114,987 hours of care to older Australians in residential facilities.”

We encourage the Committee to consider our recommendations in relation to volunteer engagement in residential aged care settings, and ensure that there is greater consideration of the needs of volunteers in the Aged Care Quality and Accreditation Framework. As the national peak body for volunteering, Volunteering Australia is committed to working with the relevant agencies to advance these measures.

Read Volunteering Australia’s submission here.