About the framework
The diversity framework works to embed diversity in the design and delivery of aged care services. It:
- takes a comprehensive approach based on the recognition of human rights
- supports aged care service providers to improve care
- encourages consumers to be partners in the design of aged care services
- recognises that like our wider community, older people have diverse characteristics and life experiences and may need different approaches with the aged care services they receive.
The framework aims to make sure our aged care services are safe and respectful of people’s diverse backgrounds and life experiences.
Why it is important
Australia is a diverse country. As the population ages, it’s important that everyone has fair and equal access to aged care.
The framework recognises that to have quality care in our aged care system, we must:
- respect the dignity and human rights of every person
- tailor care to meet an individual’s diverse needs.
The framework aims to:
- make sure everyone considers diversity when designing and providing aged care
- identify and address perceived or actual barriers that prevent people from getting the care they need
- support governments, representative groups and aged care providers to remove the barriers
- support older people and carers to take an active role in improving aged care.
The Diversity Framework complements the Aged Care Quality Standards.
The Australian Government will assess the effectiveness of the framework every 3 years to see how well it is meeting its goals.
Meeting our goals
Action plans have been developed under the framework to help meet these goals.
The plans suggest actions that providers and older people can take to remove the barriers faced by older:
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
- people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds
- lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and gender diverse, and intersex (LGBTI) people.
An action plan for older people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness is under way.
Other plans under the framework are the:
- government action plan
- shared action plan for providers to support all diverse older people.
Supporting tools and resources
The framework supports the laws that protect the rights of people from diverse backgrounds:
- Aged Care Act 1997 (see 11-3 Meaning of people with special needs)
- Age Discrimination Act 2004
- Disability Discrimination Act 1992
- Racial Discrimination Act 1975
- Sex Discrimination Act 1984
- Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986
The framework supports strategies and other frameworks that focus on the needs of people from diverse backgrounds.
- National Framework for Action on Dementia 2015–2019
- Fourth National Mental Health Plan 2009–2014
- National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013–2023
- National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Implementation Plan 2013–2023
- National Strategic Framework for Chronic Conditions
- National Disability Strategy 2010–2020
- National Strategic Framework for Rural and Remote Health
- Aged Care Advocacy Framework
- National Palliative Care Strategy
- National Guidelines for Spiritual Care in Aged Care
- Eighth National HIV Strategy
Who we work with
The diversity sub-group of the Aged Care Sector Committee developed the framework and action plans.
The sub-group consulted with older Australians, the general public, providers, peak bodies and the aged care sector.
The annual reporting of the Aged Care Sector Committee will include reporting on the framework.