Skip to main content RSS Info Close Search
Feedback

What older Aussies want from the 2024–’25 Federal Budget

Organisations supporting older Australians have voiced concerns and recommendations for the upcoming Federal Budget

<p>The new Federal Budget is set to be released online on Tuesday, May 14, 2024 at 7:30pm (AEST). [Source: Shutterstock via Neale Cousland]</p>

The new Federal Budget is set to be released online on Tuesday, May 14, 2024 at 7:30pm (AEST). [Source: Shutterstock via Neale Cousland]

Key points

  • Most older Australians receive aged care at home, but without adequate funding for this, Anglicare Australia Executive Director Kasy Chambers worries that adults will enter aged care homes earlier than required
  • Organisations supporting older Australians such as COTA Australia and Anglicare Australia submitted recommendations to the Federal Budget including reducing wait times for older Australians seeking care at home
  • Treasurer Jim Chalmers will deliver the 2024 – 2025 Federal Budget online on Tuesday, May 14, 2024 at 7:30pm (AEST)

COTA Australia, a charity that represents Australians over the age of 50 years, has called for five critical measures to be included in the Federal Budget, which will be available online on Tuesday, May 14, 2024 at 7:30pm (AEST).

COTA Australia’s five measures submitted to this year’s Federal Budget for review are:

  • improvement in funding for older Australians choosing to receive care at home with reduced waiting periods;
  • increased funds for the Commonwealth Rent Assistance to help keep older Australians in housing;
  • establishment of a definite timeline for the new Aged Care Act;
  • introduction of the Seniors Dental Benefits Schedule to help older Australians access better oral health care;
  • support for older women through targeted funding to improve retirement outcomes.

Chief Executive Officer of COTA Patricia Sparrow highlighted that all Australians are finding the cost-of-living crisis difficult and hoped that the budget, set to be announced tomorrow, will provide much-needed relief. 

“At a time when people of all ages are doing it tough, we need to see a Federal Budget that eases some of the pressure Australians — including many older Australians — are facing.

“Older people are feeling the pinch in many areas of their life — from healthcare, to aged care and housing. We’re looking for the Federal Government to show that it recognises the pressure older people are under and to chart a path to addressing them,” said Ms Sparrow. 

Ms Sparrow also referenced another of the five critical measures outlined by COTA Australia in their recommendations for the 2025 Federal Budget, as she detailed the importance of reducing waiting periods for providers of care at home.

“Support for older people choosing to age at home is also long overdue. We’ll be looking for funding in the budget that ensures people receive the care and support they need within 30 days of registration as well and a commitment to greater transparency on wait times for government-supported aged care,” said Ms Sparrow. 

Currently, it can take up to 12 months to receive home aged care services, according to information on the Department of Health and Aged Care website. 

Another organisation, Anglicare Australia, a peak social advisory body, also conveyed a similar stance to COTA Australia, with numerous budget submission recommendations. These included asking the government to develop a sustainable aged care funding system, along with reducing waiting periods and delays for in-home care of older Australians.

Additionally, other Anglicare Australia recommendations include:

  • ensuring sufficient funding for aged care workers;
  • investing in targeted support for aged care in regional Australia.

Anglicare Australia Executive Director Kasy Chambers hoped the recommendations would provide older Australians with greater access to important services such as at-home care in their local communities. 

“People are waiting years to get the care they need at home. Our workforce is under pressure, with some leaving the sector altogether [and], in regional Australia, aged care is in serious trouble. Providers are closing their doors across regional areas, forcing older people to move away from their families and communities.

“We’re calling on the government to properly fund home care. Most older people want to age at home as long as they can. They shouldn’t be forced to wait for years or be pushed into aged care too early.

Rather than living in aged care facilities, most Australians over the age of 65 were getting support in their homes — 213,000 Australians used home care in 2022, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare

“Everyone deserves quality care as they get older. All of us should be able to get quality care, with dignity, when we need it,” said Ms Chambers.

However, Ms Chambers acknowledged that it’s not just about wait times and accessibility that could improve from the new budget if a focus is given to the workers providing care for Australia’s ageing population.

“We need to see a real investment in our aged care workers. The Fair Work Commission did its part by giving workers a badly needed pay boost. Now, it’s up to the government to make sure that pay increase is properly funded,” said Ms Chambers.

Around 185,000 older Australians were living in residential aged care facilities permanently or for respite, as per data from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, in 2022.

Treasurer Jim Chalmers will deliver the 2024 – 2025 Federal Budget online on Tuesday, May 14, 2024 at 7:30pm (AEST).

Ahead of the Federal Budget release, Treasurer Chalmers made it clear on May 12, 2024, that this budget has been created to make life easier for Australians at different life stages.

“This budget is about cost‑of‑living relief at the same time as we invest in the future. It’s a responsible budget. It will be good for mums and middle Australia, good for families, pensioners, students and young people; […] it will recognise the pressures that people are under. It will engage in this fight against inflation by showing restraint, by designing our cost‑of‑living policies in a way that take the edge off inflation rather than add to it,” said Treasurer Chalmers.

What do you hope will be announced in the Federal Budget regarding funding allocations for older Australians? 

Let the team at Talking Aged Care know on social media. 

For more information and news in the aged care industry, subscribe to our free newsletter. 

Relevant content:

Older Australians face a growing concern: do you know enough?

The fallout from losing friends and how treatment tackles it

Could your neighbourhood increase the risk of dementia?

Share this article

Comments

Read next

Subscribe to our Talking Aged Care newsletter to get our latest articles, delivered straight to your inbox
  1. Many Australians are aware of dangers related to extreme heat,...
  2. A new study published in Alzheimer’s & Dementia:...
  3. Our furry friends are more than just pets. They are cherished...
  4. The Department of Health and Aged Care will address the...
  5. As one ages, it’s a good idea to keep as healthy and active...
  6. Lutheran Services has become one of the first Aged Care...

Recent articles

  1. Planning during retirement could help ensure you can afford...
  2. How important is palliative care and how can access be...
  3. How will older Australians benefit from funding allocations...
  4. Could this platform be the future for health services?
  5. Organisations supporting older Australians have voiced...
  6. This simple idea could make a big difference in your loved...
  7. Does the imbalance in funding for road safety and falls...
  8. The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has recently...
  9. Many Australians are aware of dangers related to extreme heat,...
  10. How treatment could help you recover from the loss of a loved...
  11. Why is ANZAC Day important to commemorate?
  12. If you are a care leaver, you may now be reaching an age where...