A leader advocating for the region's oldest residents says the needs of rural communities warrant special consideration as the federal government responds to the aged care royal commission.
The royal commission's final report was released on Monday, detailing 148 recommendations and five volumes of findings.
The federal government responded with a $452 million funding package, with promises of a more detailed reform plan in the May budget.
Home care was among the five areas of focus in the government's response.
Ruth Hosking, a member of the Council on the Ageing's NSW peer education and navigation research group, has been concerned about the wait for home care packages for some time.
But it was service providers themselves that dominated Mrs Hosking's thoughts as she read through the government's response.
It had been Mrs Hosking's experience that many customers applying for aged care services did not give consideration to who owned the service.
Mrs Hosking noted a marked increase in the number of privately owned service providers in recent years and raised concerns about the tactics some providers employed to generate revenue.
She said special consideration ought to be given to people in areas where there was no provider choice for services and programs.
Travel costs for carers were a factor Mrs Hosking said needed to be considered.
As someone who had helped many people navigate their way into and through the aged care system, Mrs Hosking said customers' needs were variable.
"No one program guideline fits and suits every applicant's needs and their expectations," she said.
The royal commission called for fundamental reform, proposing a new system delivering older people with the high quality care and support they were entitled to.
"The care and support must be safe and timely and must assist older people to live an active, self-determined and meaningful life in a safe and caring environment that allows for dignified living in old age," the commissioners found.
The final report was damning, with commissioners Tony Pagone and Lynelle Briggs saying people receiving aged care deserved better.
"The Australian community is entitled to expect better," the commissioners said.
"The extent of substandard care in Australia's aged care system reflects both poor quality on the part of some aged care providers and fundamental systemic flaws in the way the Australian aged care system is designed and governed."
Mrs Hosking felt for the community members in need of transferring to an aged care service while so much attention was being given to gruesome experiences of the sector.
"There are many providers who are offering excellent service," Mrs Hosking said.
She considered principles of governance - including oversight, standards, and accountability - to be very important in reforming the system.
"Being treated with respect, care and dignity certainly are requirements," Mrs Hosking said, reflecting on the words the government highlighted in its response to the royal commission's final report.
How you can continue to access our trusted content:
- Bookmark bendigoadvertiser.com.au/
- Make sure you are signed up for our breaking and regular headlines newsletters
- Follow us on Twitter: twitter.com/BgoAddy
- Follow us on Instagram instagram.com/bendigoadvertiser/
- Follow us on Google News