All Commonwealth subsidised residential aged care services will have a rating in the 'Find a Provider' section of the My Aged Care website.
Providers will be rated on a one to four dot rating scale for their service performance, with one dot as the lowest rating for inadequate services to four dots for a provider that is meeting all aged care requirements.
Minister for Aged Care and Older Australians, Richard Colbeck, says the Government is pleased to be introducing this new rating system for residential aged care facilities.
"The new Service Compliance Ratings provide an easy and effective way for older Australians and their families to consider and compare the quality of care provided by Government subsidised residential aged care services, and to support informed decision making," says Minister Colbeck.
"The ratings for aged care homes are derived from results against the new Aged Care Quality Standards, current non-compliance notices and current sanctions and notices to agree.
"The ratings are live, with a formal announcement expected in coming weeks.
"The introduction of compliance ratings is part of the Government’s response to the Carnell-Paterson Review of aged care, and is an important and significant step forward in improving transparency and driving improvements in service quality."
This new rating will provide an overall rating for the providers compliance, shows how the provider is currently performing, and allows for consumers to compare a facility's ratings with other facilities.
The Department of Health has implemented this system with help from the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission.
The new dot rating system categories are:
One dot - provider is under a current sanction, My Aged Care describes the services provided as inadequate
Two dots - there is a current notice of non-compliance for the provider, My Aged Care describes the service as needing significant improvements
Three dots - the provider has areas for improvement identified in their most recent quality assessment, aged care services are described as needing some improvements
Four dots - there are no areas for improvement for this provider, My Aged Care describes the provider as meeting Aged Care Standard requirements
Aged care peak body, Leading Age Services Australia (LASA), has expressed their support for the new compliance rating system for residential care, saying it is beneficial for prospective residents and their families.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of LASA, Sean Rooney, says this system is going to make the decisions for older Australians easier, especially around understanding how the residential aged care services they are using, or considering entering, are complying with the Aged Care Standards.
"This improved transparency is undoubtedly a good thing, but it is important to be clear that this new rating system is focused on regulatory compliance rather than the sort of comprehensive star ratings that people are used to for accommodation like hotels," explains Mr Rooney.
"The website will also report the results of consumer experience surveys conducted by the regulator. However, this is based on a very small sample of residents.
"LASA recommends that people follow the use of the compliance ratings system with in-depth conversations with prospective aged care services.”
The peak body believes this is a good modest start to a people-friendly comparison system, that was recommended back in 2017 in the Carnell-Patterson review.
LASA adds that they hope to see more rigorous indicators for all aged care services that can best inform older people who need to make decisions around their care.