The Australian College of Nursing (ACN) has received a third round of funding under the Aged Care Transition to Practice Program (ACTTP) to continue upskilling nurses to work in aged care.
ACN has participants and mentors in the program from all States and Territories and from more than 40 different aged care organisations.
ACN CEO, Adjunct Professor Kylie Ward FACN, said today that ACN is leading the way to upskill and empower nurses to become the clinical and professional leaders in residential aged care in Australia, in keeping with the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.
“A skilled nursing workforce improves health outcomes and enhances the quality of life of older people living at home, in community settings, and in residential aged care facilities (RACFs),” Adjunct Professor Ward said.
“ACN is working in partnership with the Government and the sector to protect the health, welfare, and dignity of all residents in RACFs.
“Nurses are the most qualified permanent on-site health professionals in RACFs, and we need to get more nurses into the system to meet growing demand for high quality care.
“We strongly support the Government’s commitment to require all RACFs to have a registered, qualified nurse on site 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
“ACN has for many years advocated for Registered Nurses to be always on duty and available in aged care.
“We will work with the Government to attract, develop, and retain appropriately skilled and qualified nurses to the sector.
“Registered nurses are critical in aged care facilities.
“They provide expert clinical governance, leadership, and oversight for enrolled nurses and unregulated health care workers, who make up the majority of the aged care workforce currently.
“We will strive collaboratively with aged care providers and the Government to provide training and develop further incentives to ensure the aged care sector has a highly-qualified nursing workforce pipeline to meet current and future needs,” Ms Ward said.
ACN is one of three Commonwealth-funded providers of the ACTTP program for nurses and has been delivering the program since 2021.
The ACTTP program provides a return on investment by reducing aged care sector workforce costs related to staff retention, pressure injuries, falls, medication errors, emergency department presentations, ambulance costs, and hospital admissions.
ACN detailed a plan to expand and improve the excellent ACTPP in its 2023-24 Pre-Budget Submission, which is available here.
media-release-building-australias-vital-aged-care-registered-nurse-workforce.pdf (PDF, 169KB)