The forthcoming closure of ten beds in the Jasmine Unit at the Roy Fagan Centre represents a huge blow to dementia care for Tasmanians.
State Liberal Health Minister Michael Ferguson has cited Abbott Government budget cuts as the reason for the closures.
“I call on Michael Ferguson to join me in condemning the Federal Liberal Government for their actions”, Senator Polley stated today.
Already dementia care has sustained heavy blows to funding as a result of last year’s Budget.
These new cuts will place further strain on Tasmania’s aged care facilities, representing a severe neglect of dementia care by the Federal Liberal Government.
Already there are approximately 342,000 Australians living with dementia. According to Alzheimer’s Australia, this number is set to rise to 400,000 by 2020, and approximately 900,000 by 2050. Closing beds is therefore not a solution to the problem.
“This Government has no vision and no policy for aged care and dementia care. All they have committed to are these ridiculous ‘Flying Squads’ that provide no beds and no accommodation for anyone”, Senator Polley added.
This underscores the dysfunction and chaos of the Federal Liberal Government.
With recently changing Ministers, who have done nothing to reassure the aged and those with dementia and those caring for people with dementia.
Dementia is a chronic condition that patients do not recover from. So to close these beds will place undue strain on Tasmanian aged care facilities. Particularly as patient numbers increase.
“Tasmanians deserve better care and better treatment from the Liberals – particularly the aged”. Senator Polley said.
“We need a Minister for Older Australians to look after their needs, and provide a vision for the future. And this Government is not providing one”. Senator Polley went on to state.
The Liberals have once again demonstrated that that they don’t care about the most fragile and the most vulnerable in our community.