Today in Australia, almost 6,000 younger people (under 65) with disability are forced to live in aged care.
Around 6 Australians aged under 65 are admitted into aged care every day. Some of these people move into a nursing home in their 20s or 30s – living with people in their 80s.
The majority of younger people who live in aged care acquired their disability as adults. Almost half are in partner relationships and more than 1 in 4 are parents of school-aged children at the time they go into aged care.
Being in aged care leads to a marginalised and isolated life – tragically, 82% rarely or never visit their friends. The distress this causes these people and their families is immense.
How can this issue be resolved?
The Australian Government has committed to stopping younger people going into aged care by 2022, and to making sure that all younger people leave aged care by 2025. We must make sure that the steps are taken that will see these commitments become reality.
We need to keep building on recent successes. Accessible housing is being created, but not fast enough. The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), health and aged care systems are working more effectively together, but still not hand-in-hand to stop this group falling between the cracks.