On 8 August 2011, the Federal Government released the
Productivity Commission's final report on its investigation
into the aged care system titled, 'Caring for Older
The final report extends over 1000 pages and contains 58
recommendations which will affect consumers, residents, providers,
developers and financiers.
While many of the recommendations reflect the principles and
concepts contained in the draft report, the final report provides
greater detail and clarity to a number of initiatives. Many
of those recommendations have been the subject of extensive media
attention, which has been focusing on the impact on consumers and
the family home.
Though such matters are important, a closer reading of the
report reveals a number of other initiatives and recommendations
which will impact providers including the provision of greater
flexibility for operations coupled with greater scrutiny and
A notable and more prominent item in the report is the
recommendation for the introduction of a Government backed
'Australian Care Home Credit' scheme, which would operate
similarly to a reverse mortgage product. Given the
announcement by the Honourable Bill Shorten MP, also on 8 August
2011, in relation to consumer protection laws for reverse mortgage
products, the timing is interesting.
The final report comes at a time when the prudential obligations
on providers in respect of the use accommodation bonds are also
changing, with those amendments coming into force in October
2011. How the report sits with those changes and what role
community care packages will play in the future gives rise to both
opportunity and risks to aged care providers and other providers of
forms of seniors' accommodation including retirement
Gadens Lawyers will be hosting a panel
discussion on 30 August 2011 to discuss the report and its
implications. We will be joined by fellow industry experts
from Deloitte, ANZ, Westpac and NAB to consider the effects of the
The Council announced planning policies to encourage more inner suburban retirement village and aged care development.
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