A new provider of aged and disability services in the Baw Baw Shire has been announced.
Baw Baw Shire Council’s Home Support Program and Home and Community Care Program for Younger People are both set to transition to new appointed providers in July this year, with Council stepping aside from both responsibilities.
The Federal Government has selected Benetas as the new provider of Aged Care services within the Commonwealth Home Support Program for people aged over 65 for both Baw Baw Shire and Latrobe City as of 1 July. Benetas is a not-for-profit agency and part of the Anglican Aged Care Group.
The State Government has appointed Uniting Vic.Tas as the new provider of Home and Community Care Program for Younger People. Uniting is a community service organisation operating across Victoria and Tasmania and is locally known as Uniting Gippsland.
Council says it is confident the new arrangements will deliver high-quality care and service for local clients.
“Council is working with both Benetas and Uniting Gippsland to ensure effective transition of services for Commonwealth Home Support Program clients and Home and Community Care Program for Young People clients by 30 June, 2022,” it said in a statement.
Last year, Council made the decision to cease delivering Aged and Disability Services as of 30 June. It said the decision was the result of significant Federal reforms following the 2018 Royal Commission into the quality and safety of aged care in Australia. The reforms have significantly impacted funding models and local government’s suitability for delivering aged and disability services, Council said.
“Council has maintained discussions with both State and Federal levels of government throughout the transition period and has received notification from the relevant departments regarding the transition of funding from Baw Baw Shire Council Aged and Disability Services to new providers,” said Mayor, Michael Leaney
“We support the Federal and State Government’s appointment of Benetas and Uniting Gippsland as the new service provider and are confident in their ability to deliver high-quality care and service for Baw Baw Shire clients.
“Council will continue to work with all impacted clients, staff and community throughout the transition process to ensure all parties are supported.
“We understand and acknowledge that these changes will result in a period of uncertainty for our clients, their families, and carers, along with our staff and volunteers, who are valued members of our Aged and Disability Services team.”
Council said residents who currently receive services do not need to do anything regarding the new provider. Individual clients will be directly contacted before any changes occur and Council will work with clients to ensure they are supported through the transition, it said.
“At this stage, Council is waiting for notification from The Department of Families, Fairness and Housing regarding a provider announcement for the Carers Support Programs (carers of all ages).”
“Council’s main priority has always been, and will continue to be, supporting its resident’s wellbeing and ensuring their ongoing access to quality aged and disability care providers and services.”