Review of the Aged Care Quality Standards

Learn about how we're improving the Aged Care Quality Standards to ensure older Australians are treated with respect, care and dignity.

The Aged Care Quality Standards

The Aged Care Quality Standards (Quality Standards) were introduced in 2019. They reflect the level of care and services the community can expect from organisations that provide Commonwealth subsidised aged care services.

To find out more about the current Quality Standards you can visit the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission website.

About the Aged Care Quality Standards urgent review

In March 2021, the Australian Government announced an urgent review of Quality Standards. This was in response to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety Final Report: Care, Dignity and Respect (Royal Commission).

The Royal Commission identified several areas of focus for the urgent review including:

  • governance
  • diversity
  • dementia
  • food and nutrition
  • clinical care

We are leading the review, working with the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission (ACQSC) and the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQHC).

The Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care assumed responsibility for setting clinical care components of the Quality Standards from
1 July 2021.

The review of clinical issues includes:

  • oral care, medication management
  • pressure injury prevention
  • wound management
  • continence care
  • falls prevention and mobility and,
  • infection control.

Public Consultation

We will test the revised version of the Quality Standards with a broad range of stakeholders through a public consultation.

Public consultation will take place over a 6-week period from 17 October to 25 November 2022 through a range of activities including online focus groups, an introductory webinar and a survey.

The following documents may help you to provide feedback:

The consultation paper is also available in Arabic, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), Croatian, Greek, Italian and Spanish.

To get involved and have your say, visit the Aged Care Engagement Hub.

Independent evaluation of the Aged Care Quality Standards

As part of the review of the Quality Standards, in May 2021, KPMG was engaged to complete an independent evaluation of the current Quality Standards. The evaluation looked at:

  • the clarity of wording and intent of the Quality Standards
  • the relevance of the Quality Standards to each aged care service
  • whether the Quality Standards are achievable and measurable
  • the impact of the Quality Standards on older people, providers and other key stakeholders, and
  • factors that have impacted the implementation of the Quality Standards.

As part of the evaluation:

  • 1,377 people completed an online survey,
  • 323 took part across 35 focus groups,

People taking part included older people, aged care providers and peak organisations.

Read the Independent Evaluation Report or the Independent Evaluation Summary Report.

Engagement with the sector

We are engaging with stakeholders from peak bodies, providers, and older people to support the urgent review of the Quality Standards.

We are engaged with the Council of Elders and the National Aged Care Advisory Council. These groups form part of the new governance arrangements in the aged care reforms by the Australian Government.

The National Aged Care Advisory Council provides advice to the Government. They ensure the needs of older Australians are considered in the aged care reforms, including the Quality Standards.

The Council of Elders act as the voice of older Australians. The Council advise Government on what is important to those using aged care services. They ensure those voices are considered in the aged care reforms.

To find out more about the aged care reforms and how you can get involved visit the Aged Care Engagement Hub for more information.

Quality Standards and Aged Care reforms

The review of the Quality Standards is being done with broader aged care reforms in mind. This includes changes to the Aged Care Act 1997, provider responsibilities and developing a New Support at-home Program, Star Ratings system and expanding the National Aged Care Mandatory Quality Indicator Program.

We are working to align regulations across care and support sectors including:

  • Aged care
  • disability
  • veterans’ care

To improve quality and safety of services, remove duplication of responsibilities for service providers and workers.

Visit Harmonising regulation across the care and support sector for more information on Government’s progression of this important work.

Learn how the Australian Government is providing high quality care to senior Australians, visit Delivering quality aged care services.

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