After almost two weeks of hearings in Adelaide, the royal commission into aged care is about to take its inquiry on the road scheduling its first community forums.
The initial two meetings, in Bankstown on March 1 and Bendigo on March 5 will allow members of the local community to hear about the work of the commission and offer their ideas on the challenges, strengths and opportunities to improve aged care.
The commission says more forums will be announced in other location as its work continues.
They come after the inquiry heard on Wednesday of a lack of co-ordination across the sector in terms of training, accreditation, funding, quality assurance and governance.
“With two funders in the system, essentially state and federal, looking at different parts of the health system, there is opportunity for fragmentation of care to occur,” Australian Medical Association federal president Anthony Bartone said.
Dr Bartone said all those issues were part of the “puzzle” of aged care and if they were better co-ordinated “we would have, I’m sure, better outcomes”.
The AMA boss also pointed to the importance of home care packages in keeping people in their own homes as long as possible.
But he said too many people were still waiting for assistance at a time when there were doubts over the ability of providers to meet the need, even if all the necessary places came online immediately.
“So we have potentially a systems mismatch and a systems funding issue which may lead to a systems failure if not corrected in the immediate future,” Dr Bartone said.
The commission continues its hearings in Adelaide on Thursday.