Improved support for younger people in residential aged care a welcome development

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

An announcement today by Ministers Colbeck and Robert of a strategy and funding to support younger people in residential aged care to find age-appropriate accommodation and live independently in the community is warmly welcomed by the Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association (AHHA) and the Young People in Nursing Homes National Alliance (YPINHNA).

‘The 5,000 younger people living in residential aged care, or at risk of placement there, can finally start to look forward to greater independence, and the autonomy to make choices about where and how they live,’ says Dr Bronwyn Morkham, YPINHNA National Director.

‘The tragic circumstances in which some younger Australians find themselves being placed in aged care facilities have resulted from inadequate responses to high care needs and the lack of suitable accommodation options.  Navigating highly complex pathways through multiple service providers has been difficult for young people and their families.

‘The Government’s commitment to investing in system coordinators who will work with young people and their families to support their access to more appropriate care and accommodation is a very welcome development after many years of advocacy,’ says Dr Morkham.

‘These new system coordinator roles and the dedicated investment in achieving targets outlined in the Strategy announced today are critical to shifting from ‘business as usual’ towards an approach that will deliver real results in a timely manner,’ says AHHA CEO Alison Verhoeven.

‘We still need more details from the Government about the investments which will support the Strategy, including about the training, coordination and employment of system coordinators to work with younger people and their families.

‘Importantly this will need to build on the goodwill and consultation processes that have underpinned the development of the Strategy.  A true partnership between Government agencies, younger people at risk of or living in aged care and their families and advocates, and service providers across the health, aged care and disability sectors is needed to achieve a real improvement in the lives of these younger people,’ says Ms Verhoeven.


Media contacts:  

Bronwyn Morkham 0437 178 078

Alison Verhoeven 0403 282 501


The Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association is the national peak body for public and not-for-profit hospitals, Primary Health Networks, and community and primary healthcare services.

The Young People in Nursing Homes National Alliance is Australia's first peak body for young Australians living in aged care facilities (or at risk of placement there) with a disability, who also have high and complex support needs.