Local MP Sussan Ley has announced $2.84m across five different facilities in Farrer as part of the single largest investment in residential aged care infrastructure in Australia’s history.

The latest Aged Care Approvals Round (ACAR) allocates capital work funding to help improve facilities in Balranald, Finley, Wentworth, Hillston and Tocumwal, among 72 infrastructure projects totalling $150 million across the nation.

Balranald – $1.38m
According to Ms Ley, the funding will be used to improve existing plans for a 15 bed high dependency extension wing at Bidgee Haven Hostel, to now include an upgrade to fire services and the power supply to meet increased capacity. There is also extra money for new furniture, furnishings and fittings, as well as communications technology and ancillary costs associated with the project.

Berrigan – $920k
This funding will go to Finley Regional Care to incorporate new dementia design principles, providing modern homely living and an innovative concept which aims to mimic the main street of Finley, with a shop, cinema, café and hairdresser. There will also be a refurbishment to two resident rooms and a wellness area, with upgrading of flooring, window coverings, kitchens and the installation of overhead lifters.

Wentworth – $240k
This local funding will be used to improve the centre’s common-room area allowing easier access to the outdoors, and a new quiet area and extra handbasin. It will also be spent on the garden area in the Memory Support Wing as well as an upgrade to three rooms, including widening door entries, new flooring and fittings.

Hillston – $173k
The allocation to Lachlan Lodge will go to fund an entire back-up power system to ensure the 24/7 services at the centre can continue, regardless of scheduled or unexpected power outages. Importantly the off-grid backup generator will have the capacity to power the whole building and switch on automatically when supply is interrupted.

Tocumwal – $128k
Money here is being used to upgrade the kitchen and dining room facilities at the Tocumwal Lions Community Hostel, to include new appliances and fittings, plus improving the external outlook to allow more natural light and flow to the outdoors.

Minister for Senior Australians and Aged Care Services Richard Colbeck, said investing in aged care infrastructure means we can improve the quality and safety of residential aged care from the ground up.

“Safe, secure and comfortable residential care homes, designed around the needs of residents, provide the foundation for our five-pillar, five-year aged care reform plan,” Minister Colbeck said.

Information about the 2020 ACAR outcomes, including details of the successful providers is available here.

More information

The conclusion of the 2020 ACAR marks the start of a transition period to a new system as we respond to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.

Residential care places will be allocated directly to senior Australians, providing more choice and control over which approved provider delivers their care. Providers will continue receiving direct Government funding on their behalf.

Capital funding will continue to be allocated directly to providers through grant processes outside of the ACAR.