Aged – care homes might face Budget hit

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Aged-care homes might face Budget hit


THE aged-care sector could be facing a $2 billion hit in the Federal Budget as a result of the Gillard Government’s determination to achieve a surplus.

The Government reportedly is considering options to cut back on $7 billion in taxpayer-funded subsidies.

One option is a five per cent cut in subsidies to nursing homes to cover costs of employing staff to help residents eat, bathe and go to the toilet, The Australian Financial Review said today.

Finance Minister Penny Wong, while refusing to speculate on budget decisions, sought to reassure elderly Australians of the Government’s commitment to the sector.

“We’re a Labor Government, we have a strong track record of responding to those in need,” she told ABC Radio.

The Government has earmarked aged-care reform as a priority, although it still has to respond to the recommendations of a Productivity Commission inquiry.

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