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Aged care registration scheme: Minister releases consultation paper

The Minister for Aged Care is seeking feedback on a proposed registration scheme for aged care workers.

Richard Colbeck announced on Friday that the public consultation paper brought the sector one step closer to ensuring all staff are suitable to work with senior and vulnerable Australians.

Such a register was recommended by the royal commission and the Aged Care Workforce Strategy Taskforce’s 2018 report.

“What we’re looking for is a registration scheme that screens all aged care workers, without putting a red tape burden on them or service providers,” Colbeck said.

“We also want to make sure that workers are still able to move between sectors, employers, regions and states as circumstances change.”

Aged care advocates, providers and workers have for years advocated for registration for direct care staff like personal care workers to bring them in line with other workers in the sector like nurses and some allied health professionals.

The government’s consultation paper details the objectives of an aged worker screening or regulation scheme, key issues that the scheme could address and existing regulatory models in related sectors.

Feedback can be provided via an online survey until 29 June.

Colbeck’s office said a scheme may be introduced in stages, with full implementation possible in 2022.

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