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Australian Disability Report Strengthens Argument for Long Term Care Scheme


  • Published: 2009-08-07 : Author: Australian Medical Association
  • Synopsis: Carers devote their lives to supporting a disabled loved one investing all of their financial emotional and physical resources until there is nothing left..

AMA calls for a national long-term care scheme for people with disabilities have been strengthened with the release of a report by the National People with Disabilities and Carer Council. Shut out: The Experience of People with Disabilities and their Families in Australia highlights the plight Australians with disabilities and their carers who are too often shut out of community life.

AMA calls for a national long-term care scheme for people with disabilities have been strengthened with the release of a report by the National People with Disabilities and Carer Council. Shut out: The Experience of People with Disabilities and their Families in Australia highlights the plight Australians with disabilities and their carers who are too often shut out of community life.

AMA President, Dr Andrew Pesce, said 37 percent of the 750 submissions received listed 'income support and the cost of disability' as a key factor in their isolation.

"This is further evidence that we have to do something as a nation about long-term care, particularly for those with catastrophic injuries," Dr Pesce said.

"Carers devote their lives to supporting a disabled loved one, investing all of their financial, emotional and physical resources until there is nothing left. "Our support to them as a community shouldn't be about patching up the gaps when these families can't cope, so that people with a disability and their families can just get by.

"We need to introduce an entitlement scheme that goes beyond the legal lottery and a mere safety net to deliver sustainable and productive lives."

Dr Pesce said a properly structured long term care scheme would make more effective use of taxpayer money and, "more importantly, provide better lives and quality of life for the disabled".

"A national scheme would provide justice, fairness and compassion for those who need it most - and, over time, provide greater affordability for governments and the community.

"I believe the Government is sincere in its desire to redress this inequity in our society.

"A new national long term care scheme based on need rather than the ability to prove fault will help achieve this."

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