Younger people in residential aged care: priorities for action
The Government is working to stop the flow of younger people (under the age of 65) going into residential aged care, and to help younger people who are already in residential aged care to move to age-appropriate accommodation and support.
About the initiative
The Australian Government is ensuring no younger person (under the age of 65) lives in residential aged care unless there are exceptional circumstances.
In response to the findings of the interim report from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, the Government has made 2 announcements.
On 25 November 2019, the Prime Minister announced:
- more ambitious targets for stopping the flow of younger people entering residential aged care by the end of 2022
- working towards no people under the age of 65 living in residential aged care by 2025, with limited exceptions
- improved decision-making by Aged Care Assessment Teams in relation to younger people and overt documenting of their decisions (already in-train)
- an investment of $4.7 million in 2019–20 to help meet new targets to assist younger people to move from residential aged care.
On 30 September 2020, the Minister for Aged Care and Senior Australians and the Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme announced:
- the Younger People in Residential Aged Care (YPIRAC) Strategy for reducing the number of younger people living in residential aged care
- an investment of $10.6m for a national network of system coordinators to help younger people find age-appropriate accommodation and supports to allow them to live independently.
The Government has strengthened the initial targets of the Younger People in Residential Aged Care Action Plan. Apart from exceptional circumstances, the strengthened targets are:
- no people under the age of 65 entering residential aged care by 2022
- no people under the age of 45 living in residential aged care by 2022
- no people under the age of 65 living in residential aged care by 2025.
Who we work with
The Government established a Joint Agency Taskforce between the:
- Department of Social Services (Chair)
- Department of Health
- National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA).
The Taskforce has developed the Younger People in Residential Aged Care Strategy 2020–2025, which builds on the earlier action plan to meet the strengthened targets. Priority areas of work in the YPIRAC Strategy have been co-designed with key stakeholders, with input from state and territory governments.
Meeting our goals
In February 2022, changes were made to the aged care assessment pathway for younger people seeking access to Australian Government-funded aged care services. These changes ensure that younger people have support to fully explore alternative accommodation and support options more suitable to their care needs. This also includes supporting younger people to test their eligibility for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) where appropriate. Guidance on the assessment pathway is in the Principles and guidelines for a younger person’s access to Commonwealth funded aged care services.
We worked with Ipsos Public Affairs Pty Ltd to complete a detailed analysis of younger people living in residential aged care. This project was unique as for the first time we merged Health and NDIA data, and looked at different groups to understand their characteristics.
As part of the 2020–21 Budget, the Government is establishing a national network of up to 40 YPIRAC system coordinators to help younger people:
- living in residential aged care
- at risk of entry to residential aged care.
System coordinators will work with younger people and their families to access the Commonwealth, and State and Territory housing, disability and health services, and social supports they need.
- Analysis of younger people living in residential aged care
- Younger People in Residential Aged Care Strategy 2020–2025
- Information for aged care providers
Younger people in aged care contact
Email us with questions about Health's work to move younger people (under 65 years) from residential aged care to more age-appropriate support.