Peak organisations representing aged care providers have set a date to form a single unified body after nearly a decade of negotiations.
Members of Leading Aged Services (LASA) and Aged & Community Services Australia (ACSA) have announced an official merger for 1 July 2022.
The two bodies established a steering committee in January, with UnitingCare director Claerwen Little taking over chairmanship.
LASA chair Dr Graeme Blackman said the “landmark” decision marks a significant turning point for the sector.
“This decision heralds a new era for Australia’s aged care sector with a single industry association to provide a strong and united voice, as well as a helping hand, for all providers of aged care services,” Blackman said.
A unified representative voice in aged care was a leading recommendation laid out after last year’s royal commission.
Back in 2012, LASA and ACSA attempted to join forces but plans were dumped after ACSA members voted to overturn the agreement.
ACSA chair adjunct professor Stephen Cornelissen said a single representative entity will be able to better advocate for its hundreds of members.
“We know from the Royal Commission that the aged care sector faces enormous challenges as it undertakes reform and what is needed is the strongest possible representation to take our sector forward,” Cornelissen said.
Both LASA and ACSA have said they will collaborate with peak church bodies and the Aged Care Reform network to design a new representative model for the industry.
The peaks have developed eight shared principles for the new model, including lower membership fees and a greater focus on the the needs of members coming from diverse communities.
More details on the merger are expected to be released in the coming weeks.Do you have an idea for a story?
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