A joint investigation into aged care has revealed serious concerns with the quality of aged-care facilities and access to home care services across the country, the Green Party and Labour said today.
Labour and the Green Party have joined with Grey Power to investigate aged care in New Zealand, revisiting the 2010 review which saw 20 nationwide meetings with over 1200 people involved. The current tour has already visited Rotorua, Golden Bay, Nelson and Levin, and will continue in Kelston, Auckland on 18 April.
“Older New Zealanders deserve to have a range of safe, affordable options for care, but what we have been hearing at these meetings is that the system is still not up to scratch,” said Green Party senior citizens spokesperson Barry Coates.
“In Rotorua, people raised the lack of government oversight and advocacy for older people as a barrier to reform of the aged care system.
“At-home care has been raised as a major issue, with many people hoping to remain in their homes but struggling to get the help they need there. The rules appear to change frequently but are not well communicated,” said Mr Coates.
“Unsurprisingly, there are still serious consequences from the poor workplace conditions and pay for aged-care workers in New Zealand,” said Labour health spokesperson David Clark.
“There are many aged-care workers who love their jobs and do a great job caring for older people, but in too many workplaces they are too stretched to provide a good standard of care to everyone.
“Over the past six years, the Government has not followed up on most of the recommendations from our last report, and senior citizens are raising many of the same issues that we identified in 2010.
“We are looking forward to hearing more from anyone who is interested in sharing their experiences, and will be using these stories to help us set the agenda for a Labour-Green Government in 2017,” said Mr Clark