Federal Secretary Annie Butler said it was time that federal Aged Care Minister Ken Wyatt intervened in what is a long-running wage dispute across Bupa’s 26 aged care facilities.
“We’re concerned that Bupa’s wage negotiations with the ANMF Victorian branch have failed to address the inadequate staffing levels that are urgently needed if elderly residents at their aged care facilities are to receive the care they deserve,” Ms Butler said.
“Unfortunately, the campaign our ANMF Victorian branch is running against Bupa is a snapshot of what’s occurring at nursing homes across the country, where providers are putting profits before people, sacking nurses and slashing thousands of nursing hours.
“The ANMF Victorian branch has been unable to recommend Bupa’s wage offer to its members because it simply does not address the inadequate staffing that is compromising the care being provided to elderly residents of Bupa’s nursing homes.
“This includes the number of nurses and carers being rostered on every shift, particularly night shift where we know that often just one carer is allocated to care for between 20-25 residents, and the failure of Bupa management to replace nurses and carers on unplanned leave.”
Ms Butler plans to address a rally of Victorian Bupa nurses, carers and their supporters outside Bupa’s corporate headquarters in Melbourne today.
“The ANMF Victorian branch is continuing with its unprecedented action against Bupa and is working hard to achieve safe staffing levels through its ongoing negotiations with Bupa management, but the ANMF Federal Office believes it’s now time for the Aged Care Minister Ken Wyatt to intervene and ensure that residents are getting the safe and proper care they require – and to guarantee that taxpayers’ money used to fund aged care facilities will be used to provide direct care to residents,” she said.
“Without mandated staffing levels or care hours in the aged care sector, the Federal Government is allowing providers like Bupa to determine ‘adequate’ levels of care and, as we are seeing at nursing homes across the country, providers can’t be trusted to do this in good faith.”
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