This inquiry was established to review the effectiveness of aged care frameworks in ensuring vulnerable aged Australians receive quality care and are protected from abuse, with a focus in the first instance on the critical care failures in the Makk and McLeay wards of the Oakden Older Persons Mental Health Facility (Oakden) in South Australia (SA). This facility has been the subject of a number of investigations, some of which are ongoing.
During the course of this inquiry, the Senate Community Affairs References Committee (committee) heard many personal accounts from family members regarding the poor care given to residents of Oakden. The committee is deeply concerned with the nature of the evidence presented to this inquiry which detailed the sub-standard, and in some cases abusive, treatment of highly vulnerable older Australians with cognitive or mental health impairments.
The committee is further concerned with evidence which points to systemic issues that negatively impact the quality of aged care services, not only at Oakden but throughout Australia.
This interim report is focused on the abject failures of the systems designed to provide oversight of care standards at Oakden. The committee's broader concerns regarding aged care quality frameworks, which the committee considers require review and consideration, are also outlined in this interim report.