Overview: Aged care advocacy

Seniors Rights Service offers aged care advocacy to people using in-home and residential aged care services. If something goes wrong, Seniors Rights Service can guide you in raising your concerns with your service provider.

Seniors Rights Service provides free, confidential support and advocacy for anyone receiving Commonwealth-funded aged care services. We promote the rights of older people to aged care service providers.

What is aged care advocacy?

Aged care advocacy means offering information to people receiving aged care services about their rights and responsibilities, and assisting them to uphold their rights.

If you are concerned about any aspect of your aged care or services and you want to speak to someone about this, Seniors Rights Service is available to help you.

An aged care advocate can speak on your behalf, when you feel disadvantaged, in a way that represents your best interests.

The advocate will always ask your permission before taking any action.

Our aged care advocacy services are free, confidential and independent.

For more information, see the Seniors Rights Service fact sheet What is Advocacy?

What can an aged care advocate do?

  • Listen to your concerns
  • Empower you to identify your rights and responsibilities
  • Assist you to uphold your rights
  • Speak on your behalf to uphold your rights.

Seniors Rights Service forms the NSW part of the national Older Persons Advocacy Network (OPAN), serving aged care recipients across the state. OPAN delivers aged care advocacy services through a Commonwealth Government National Aged Care Advocacy Program (NACAP) grant.

You may wish to visit OPAN’s website, or call the national number for OPAN on 1800 700 600 and be transferred to the appropriate state or territory so you may be assisted by an aged care advocate.

How is advocacy different from mediation or other kinds of assistance?

Advocacy is not:

  • Mediation – which is a way of resolving disputes with the help of a mediator. The mediator is neutral and does not take sides. Their role is to facilitate the discussion between the people in dispute and to seek a mutually acceptable solution.
  • Complaints – which the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission investigates and resolves complaints made by individuals who have concerns about care and services. The Commission independently accredits, assesses and monitors aged care services subsidised by the Australian Government. Contact the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission on 1800 951 822.
  • Conciliation – which involves participating in the process and ensuring that a just settlement is reached.
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