AMA submission on the Draft Aged Care Data and Digital Strategy

The AMA’s submission is critical of the proposed strategy.

The AMA’s submission to the Department of Health and Aged Care consultation on the proposed Aged Care Data and Digital Strategy says the draft strategy is a step in the right direction, but relies too heavily on individual aged care consumers managing their health and aged care journey.

Under the draft strategy, older people would be expected to manage this journey using digital (mobile) applications. This is particularly problematic given the recent findings of the Aged Care Royal Commission that found there was a strong preference among older people to receive individualised support to navigate the aged care landscape. 

The AMA submission cautions against over-investment in digital solutions without conducting a baseline analysis of the desire/interest among the older cohort that the strategy is targeting to engage with digital applications. It also questions whether improving the health and digital literacy of older people over the 5-year strategy term is achievable, as proposed by the draft.

The AMA is also concerned about a proposal that the “digital enablement has the potential to reduce the estimated shortfall in the aged care workforce from 36,974 to 20,951 workers by 2030”.

While the AMA supports achieving efficiencies in the delivery of care, the implementation of technology in aged care cannot and should not replace human delivered care and human engagement. Adequate staffing numbers and appropriate mix of care staff skills is a continuous resourcing requirement in aged care. 

Read the AMA’s submission

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