Aged care re­vamp


EL­DERLY Aus­tralians will be pro­tected from dodgy nurs­ing home op­er­a­tors un­der sweep­ing changes to lift safety and qual­ity stan­dards across the aged care sys­tem.

The Her­ald Sun can re­veal a new safety watch­dog and crit­i­cal in­ci­dent re­sponse units will be es­tab­lished by the Turn­bull Gov­ern­ment to look af­ter more than 1.3 mil­lion se­niors in aged care.

The watch­dog will be the sin­gle point of con­tact.

“Our se­nior Aus­tralians have built the na­tion that we en­joy to­day,” Fed­eral Aged Care Min­is­ter Ken Wy­att told the Her­ald Sun.

“They have rightly earned the re­spect of the com­mu­nity and must be cared for with the dig­nity they de­serve.”

A SUP­POS­EDLY in­de­pen­dent re­port into how Aus­tralia’s largest wealth man­ager AMP charged clients fees for ser­vices they didn’t re­ceive went through 25 draft ver­sions with changes from the com­pany.

A se­nior ex­ec­u­tive at the com­pany has ad­mit­ted to the bank­ing royal com­mis­sion that he marked up changes to draft ver­sions of the law firm Clay­ton Utz’s doc­u­ment while the board also made changes be­fore it was signed off.

It was then pre­sented to the cor­po­rate watch­dog, the Aus­tralian Se­cu­ri­ties and In­vest­ments Com­mis­sion, as an in­de­pen­dent doc­u­ment last year — some­thing AMP group ex­ec­u­tive for ad­vice Jack Re­gan now ad­mits he feels “a level of dis­com­fort” about.

Among the changes was the re­moval of chief ex­ec­u­tive Craig Meller’s name from a list of peo­ple in­ter­viewed as part of an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the un­law­ful and de­lib­er­ate de­ci­sion to con­tinue charg­ing fees to a group of “or­phan” clients for three months de­spite them re­ceiv­ing no ad­vice ser­vices.

Coun­sel as­sist­ing the com­mis­sion Michael Hodge pre­sented emails sug­gest­ing it was re­moved be­cause it might “at­tract un­nec­es­sary at­ten­tion by ASIC”.

Craig Meller

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