More MS news articles for August 2002

Aged Care Is Not the Right Place for Younger People

1st July, 2002
Gilmore, Victoria
Australian Nursing Journal ANJ

There are currently 1113 people under 50 years of age living in residential aged care facilities in Australia. They suffer from a range of illnesses and injuries including Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis and traumatic brain injury. Twelve of these people are under 20 years of age.

There are often no alternatives to this type of care for many younger people. While specialist services do exist, they are limited not only by the number of beds they have but also by the long lengths of stay for young people receiving high level care.

Some young people and their families and friends are comfortable with their placement in aged care facilities because they are close to home; know the staff well and receive good nursing care; or, the facility has modified its policies and practices to meet the young person's needs.

Some young people, however, live in facilities where it is difficult to have other young people visiting - even their own children; where home visits are limited to meet Commonwealth regulations for older people, and, where access to specialist therapy is unavailable.

The ANF recently attended a national summit on young people in nursing homes hosted by a number of advocacy groups for young people in nursing homes, including the MS Society, Young Parkinson's Housing Group and Brain Injury Australia

The summit also included Commonwealth and State/Territory Government representatives, providers of care from both the aged care and specialist sectors, and people with disabilities.

The summit prepared a call for action to provide an opportunity for key stakeholders to work together to provide choices for young people requiring high level nursing care.

More information about the call for action and the plans of the consortium can be found at:

Rural and remote summit deferred

The national rural and remote area nursing summit planned for July 2002 has been deferred until October. Read the draft papers, including an action plan, on the National Rural Health Alliance website: or ph: (02) 6285 4660 for details.

© Copyright 2002, Australian Nursing Journal ANJ