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Code of Conduct for aged care sector in Australia

Australian Minister for Aged Care, Bronwyn Bishop released the draft of a Code of Conduct and Ethical Practice for the aged care sector at a meeting this week of the National Accreditation and Compliance Forum in Sydney.

"The Code of Conduct is designed to reassure the community that the industry wishes to comply with the spirit of the law as well as the letter of the law," Mrs Bishop said.

The Code of Conduct was initiated by the Minister through the Forum and was developed by Working Group Forum members headed by Reverend Dr John I. Fleming, Director of the Southern Cross Bioethics Institute.

Mrs Bishop said the Code of Conduct and Ethical Practice aims to assists the aged care sector work in a professional and ethical manner.

"The Code covers a broad range of topics from fundamental human rights through to financial and legal issues."

"It is recognition that the industry wants to be well regarded and have the community at large understand that they have an ethical commitment."

"Importantly, the Code has been developed as a voluntary and self-regulatory Code to provide a guide to good practice."

Mrs Bishop said the Draft Code is available for comment until February 2001.

"Individual service providers, industry bodies, consumer groups, professional bodies and interested people are encouraged to consider the draft and provide comment."

"This draft is being made available to encourage discussion and comment on the issues it raises, and the development of a culture that clearly places the needs of aged care residents at the centre of a facility’s operations."

"I would encourage all those who work in the aged care industry to become involved in this process," said the Minister.

Further enquiries can be made via www.australia.org.nz

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