Morrison promises more money for aged care
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has promised more money will be spent on aged care before Christmas after a damning royal commission report called for urgent funding.
The Aged Care Royal Commission's interim report has warned "cruel and harmful" aged care needs immediate funding for high-need, in-home care recipients.
Mr Morrison confirmed the federal government would announce new spending to help shocking neglect uncovered during the inquiry.
"I've been saying for some time now that we knew we would need to address issues coming out of this royal commission on aged care," he told 3AW radio on Friday.
The prime minister met with Treasurer Josh Frydenberg and Aged Care Minister Richard Colbeck on Thursday night to discuss funding options ahead of the mid-year budget update.
Leading Age Services Australia, which represents providers, wants an extra $1.3 billion this year to guarantee service quality and at least $500 million annually for more home care packages.
Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said the figure would be substantial, providing immediate action and pursuing more wide-ranging reform.
"There will be a strong response," he told Sky News.
"We will have both an immediate and longer term response. We are already working on that, with a view of having that included in our half-year budget update."
Mr Morrison said the royal commission was the start of the process, which had uncovered "shocking" and difficult to read information.
"It doesn't matter whether they're family or not your family, they should all have the same type of standard of care right across the country," he said.
The interim report also highlighted dealing with the use of chemical restraints in residential aged care and getting 6000 young disabled people out of nursing homes as soon as possible.
Mr Morrison said the figure had fallen from 6200 to 5600 over the past two years, but both issues would need more attention.
"There are already some things that have been done in all of these areas but there's so much more to do which is what the royal commission is highlighting," he said.
He pointed to Brisbane-based Youngcare, which builds home for young people with serious disabilities, as a model.
Deputy Labor leader Richard Marles blamed the government, saying it had been dragged "kicking and screaming" to the royal commission.
"They've been in government the last six years. What's going on?" he told the Nine Network.
"This is an absolute national scandal."