It's time to act now on aged care in Bendigo

Federal Member for Bendigo, Lisa Chesters, has today launched a community campaign urgently calling on the Morrison Liberal Government to act now on aged care in Central Victoria.

“18.9 percent of residents in the Bendigo electorate are over the age of 65, they deserve respect, dignity and quality care as they enter their older years,” Chesters said.


“Bendigo was the first regional city visited by the Royal Commission. Far too many local families had stories of concern to share.”


The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety’s interim report this week laid bare the disturbing state of Australia’s aged care system.


“There is not one part of Australia’s aged care system that isn’t impacted by crisis,” Chesters said.


“Older residents and their loved ones cannot wait until the final report of the Royal Commission, which is handed down in November 2020, for action on aged care.”


Local resident and aged care advocate, Ruth Hosking made a submission to the Royal Commission calling for action.


“Accessing the aged care system is far too complex and could be much easier for ageing residents to navigate,” Hosking said.


“We older people need to be able to speak to people face to face and the current system in Bendigo doesn’t allow for that. The process is very daunting.”


While Labor is prepared to work constructively with the Morrison Liberal Government to progress long-term reform challenges, there are three things the Royal Commission says it must address now to fix Australia’s broken aged care system:


  1. Ensure older Australians are getting the care at home when they need it most.
  2. End the overreliance of chemical restraints in aged care.
  3. Stop the unacceptable number of young people entering residential aged care.


120,000 older Australians are waiting for care at home, with waiting times blowing out to almost two years for the highest levels of care.


“I’ve met with local families who are very concerned with the care their parents are receiving in aged care facilities,” Chesters said.


“Far too many are still waiting for homecare packages and many families have expressed concerns that their loved ones may die before receiving a package, despite being approved.


“The Liberal Government has failed.


 “There are dozens of reviews and hundreds of recommendations that the Morrison Liberal Government should have implemented to act on aged care.


“It’s time to act now on aged care – for our loved ones who built the country we are rightly proud and for every Australian who wants to age with dignity and autonomy in care.” 


Constituents can sign Labor’s petition calling for action on the broken aged care system by visiting: