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New org formed to represent rest home industry

New organisation formed to represent rest home industry

Rest homes and private hospitals are combining forces to better represent the sector that provides care for New Zealand’s most vulnerable elderly.

A new organisation, HealthCare Providers NZ (HCPNZ), to be launched on March 10, will represent more than 650 residential care facilities and private surgical hospitals.

HCPNZ chief executive Martin Taylor says; “HealthCare Providers NZ represents around 75 per cent of the sector, from small owner-operators to religious and welfare-run facilities, through to large companies.”

HCPNZ, a combination of Residential Care New Zealand and NZ Private Hospitals Association, is aimed at finding a solution to the present crisis and ensuring the sector's future.

Chronic underfunding has already forced the closure or sale of dozens of rest homes and private hospitals.

“It is not just the 42,000 New Zealanders who live in private hospitals and rest homes who are affected, it is also their families and those who work there,” Mr Taylor says.

“We are, however, encouraged by Prime Minister Helen Clark’s recent state of the nation address in which she referred to establishing a long-term solution.”

The launch of HealthCare Providers NZ will take place on March 10 2005 in Parliament's Grand Hall at 3:45pm, hosted by the Hon Pete Hodgson.

Major closures of rest homes

Wairarapa/ Manawatu

Woodville, closed April 30, 1999. Eketahuna, closed May 4, 2004

Dunedin

Andersons Bay, 51 beds hospital/rest home (closed mid 2004) Ashwood Valley Home, 25 beds (closed second half of 2004) St Lukes, 33 bed hospital (closed 2003) Mary Hill Mercy Centre, 9 beds (closed May 2004) Redroofs (Salvation Army, to be sold as a going concern)

Invercargill Gladstone, 10 Bed Rest home Park View, 12 Bed Rest home Elm Court, 80 Bed - 20 Dementia Hospital - 50 Hospital

Gore Charlton Lodge, 15 Bed Resthome

South Canterbury

Woodham Lodge, Waimate, 11 bed -community trust (closed late 2003) Elizabeth Court , 17 Bed Rest home

Auckland:

Roskill Masonic Villages: for tender in April Methodist Mission – has signalled likelihood of sale

Questions and Answers

What is HealthCare Providers NZ?

HealthCare Providers NZ is an organisation that represents aged care health providers, private geriatric hospitals and private hospitals.

It was established by Residential Care NZ and NZ Private Hospital Association. These organisations were previously the two largest representative organisations in the aged care, private geriatric hospital and private surgical hospital sectors.

What is the background to Residential Care NZ’s and NZ Private Hospital Association’s decision to join forces?

The idea for the organisation came about in 2004 following a strategic decision by Residential Care New Zealand and the NZ Private Hospital Association to combine forces in order to better represent the sector. Each organisation believed that the sector was at a watershed time in relation to historical and existing under-funding of the aged care sector. This crisis required the creation of an entity that was focused, professional and had the capacity to provide extensive membership services whilst representing and advocating the sectors concerns to government.

Who does HealthCare Providers NZ represent?

HealthCare Providers NZ represents aged care providers (residential care facilities and geriatric private hospitals) and the private surgical hospital sector (for example, day surgeries, elective surgery, and maternity care).

The organisation’s 650 members provide the full spectrum of healthcare services to tens of thousands of elderly on a daily basis and employ thousands of care givers and nurses.

HCPNZ represents all parts of the sector from the religious and welfare providers through to the nationwide commercial operators.
Aged Care Sector

How many people are in long term residential care and geriatric private hospitals?

About 42,000 (Source: Ministry of Health CCPS database for subsidised residents)

How many residential care facilities and geriatric hospitals are there?

Between 850 and 900 throughout the country.

Does the government run any residential care facilities?

Yes a small number, refer to written question 18474 below: 18474 (2004). To the Associate Minister of Health (15 December 2004): Is the government intending to own and run residential care facilities? Hon Ruth Dyson (Associate Minister of Health) replied: A small number of residential care facilities are currently run by district health boards. There is no intention to increase this number.

What are the differences between residential care facilities, retirement villages, and private hospitals?

Residential care facilities provide 24 hour care 7 days a week and residents are either subsidised or private. To get a bed in a facility residents have to be assessed as requiring 24 hour care. A fully subsidised resident receives about $88 dollars a day inclusive of gst.

Retirement Villages sell independent living apartments to the elderly. That apartment is usually part of a complex that provides certain services such as home support and recreational facilities for a weekly fee. The age of people going into Retirement Villages is generally between 70 and 85.

Private geriatric hospitals are usually part of residential care facilities and provide hospital level care to residents who are sick and dying.


What age do people go into residential care, and have there been any changes to the age over the last decade?

The average age to enter a rest home is about 85. Ten years ago the average age was around 75.

How does an elderly person enter a residential care facility?

Access to residential care on a government subsidy, or as a capped private payer is through an assessment. If an elderly person is assessed as requiring 24 hour care then they can move into a residential care facility.

Have there been any changes to the type of care provided in residential care facilities over the last 10 years?

Yes, the needs of elderly entering facilities now are many times greater than it was a decade ago. Today residents require many more care hours and more specialized medical treatment.

Is there a present crisis in aged care?

Yes there is a crisis caused by historical and present under-funding of residential care facilities and geriatric private hospitals.

What are the present trends?

Closure of small and medium sized facilities in both the ‘for profit ‘and ‘not for profit’ sector, a significant number of rest homes for sale, and low wages for care givers and nurses.

What are the long term implications of not addressing the crisis?

Very large residential care facilities close to the main population centres, few services in rural areas and small towns, and demand outstripping supply for residential care beds and private hospitals beds.

Have there been any recent moves by the government to alleviate the problems?

A three per cent increase on the bed day price to compensate for inflation in 2004, the establishment of a working group to report on the situation to inform a budget bid and a promise by the prime minister in her state of the nation address to provide a long term funding solution for the sector.

Private Surgical Hospitals

What services do these Hospitals offer?

Private Surgical Hospitals provide an extensive range of procedures, from relatively simple procedures such as hernia repairs through to complex cardiothoracic surgery. They also provide services such as maternity services.

How many private hospitals are there in New Zealand?

Around 40 hospitals and 30 day surgery clinics.

How many people do they employ?

Around 3000 people are employed on a full time and part time basis in private hospitals (numbers for the day surgery clinics are not available).

How many procedures do they complete each year?

Over 150,000 procedures are carried out in private hospitals each year (numbers for the day surgery clinics are not available).

What percentage of ACC funded surgical procedures are carried out in private hospitals?

Around 80%

Why are private hospitals so important?

A strong private hospital sector complements and supports the public sector. It is widely acknowledged that the public sector could not recruit and maintain the number of surgeons it needs if the private sector couldn’t offer these same surgeons employment opportunities.

Also, if the private sector didn’t provide the number of procedures it currently does ACC would not be able to get thousands of New Zealanders back to work as quickly as they do.


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