Quality in aged care
When you’re choosing a service provider or receiving services, it’s important to think about quality. Quality is not just about meeting standards. Your wellbeing, social interaction and health can also affect your quality of life.
You need to know when you are not receiving the expected standard of care and what to do when you have a concern.
What is quality in aged care?
Aged care services aim to improve the quality of life of the people receiving care.
To help make sure this happens, providers of government-funded aged care must meet standards in areas such as health, safety, personal care and staffing.
From 1 July 2019, a single set of Aged Care Quality Standards will apply across all service types.
Read more about the Aged Care Quality Standards.
You also have a right to receive high quality care and services and to always be treated with respect and dignity. These rights and more are protected by the Charter of Aged Care Rights, introduced from 1 July.
How can I check the quality of care?
There are tools available to help you check the quality of Australian Government-funded aged care providers. You can:
- use the Find a provider tool to:
- search for and compare aged care services
- find specific services
- check if an aged care provider has a notice of non-compliance or sanction
- use the non-compliance checker to find out if a provider is non-compliant (now or in the past)
- learn more about the National Aged Care Mandatory Quality Indicator Program
- find accreditation and consumer experience reports for aged care homes
- ask providers about the quality of their care for home care or aged care homes.
How is quality assessed?
The quality of Australian Government-funded aged care is assessed against quality standards by the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission.
The Commission checks compliance with standards through assessment and monitoring processes such as:
- visits to the aged care service (aged care homes have at least one unannounced visit each year)
- self-assessment by providers
- feedback from care recipients
- reviewing providers’ plans for continuous improvement
- reporting on the service’s performance against the standards
- publishing consumer experience reports (for aged care homes).
The Commission also provides a free service you can use if you have a concern or complaint about any of the care and services you receive from an Australian Government-subsidised service provider.
How are my rights protected?
If you are living in an aged care home or receiving aged care services at home, there are a number of ways your rights are protected:
If care does not meet standards
If an aged care provider does not meet quality standards:
- the provider must revise their plan for continuous improvement
- the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission will monitor the provider
- the Department of Health may give them a notice of non-compliance.
If the provider does not respond to our notice of non-compliance, or if there is a serious risk to someone receiving care, the department may sanction them.
You can check if a service provider has compliance actions against them using our non-compliance checker.
Police checks for aged care workers
All staff, including volunteers, working in aged care homes and Home Care Package services who have supervised or unsupervised access to care recipients must obtain a police check.
What if I’m not happy with the quality of care?
If you have concerns about the quality of care that you or your loved one is receiving, and you don’t feel comfortable talking to the provider (or you have tried and it didn’t work), you can: