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Aged care providers face January deadline

Australia’s top 100 aged care providers have been given until 7 January to respond to a list of detailed questions from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety – with remaining providers expected to be given a further month.

The Royal Commission is currently in the process of issuing letters to the top providers, asking for information including:

  • views as to where the Royal Commission should focus its attention, including areas where change is required;
  • more detailed data around complaints and instances of substandard care since 1 July 2013, their causes and the provider’s responses;
  • the extent and nature of care given to people younger than 65; and
  • systemic issues such as access to healthcare services, and the effectiveness of the interface between the aged care system and other services such as primary health, acute care and disability services.

The Royal Commission will hold a preliminary hearing in Adelaide next month, and has flagged the opportunity for interested parties to make further submissions after that hearing.

For all aged care providers, the broad range of information requested by the Royal Commission and the extremely short timeframe for response underline the importance of acting now to prepare for scrutiny, rather than waiting to see what happens.

Poor or delayed responses to issues arising during the Royal Commission process have the potential to cause significant damage to the reputation of an aged care provider and its viability into the future.

It’s no secret that preparation is the heavy-lifting component of any communications strategy.

Aged care providers – including those who have not yet received their letters from the Royal Commission – should act now to gather the relevant information and prepare their communications strategies to ensure they are in the best possible position to protect their reputations and assure their stakeholders.

Other articles about the aged care Royal Commission:

Carina Tan-Van Baren is a health and aged care specialist at Cannings Purple, with more than 25 years’ experience in issues and reputation management, stakeholder engagement, the property sector and strategy development. Contact Carina.

 Cannings Purple has significant royal commission experience, including the commissions into institutional responses to child sexual abuse, the Australian Wheat Board and HIH Insurance.

We are industry leaders in media training and were also recognised for Crisis Communications at the 2017 Asia-Pacific Excellence Awards for work supporting Australian company Macmahon during a hostage situation in Nigeria.