Easier access to home support for older NZers

  • Tony Ryall

A booklet telling people how to get a needs assessment and access home support services has been sent to organisations throughout New Zealand to help ensure people have easy access to the information.

Health Minister Tony Ryall says, "The booklet tells older people, their families and caregivers about how to access the support services to help them live independently in the community for as long as possible.

"It also includes local contact information for people wherever they are in New Zealand. The booklets have been sent to all GPs, District Health Boards and other organisations who help support older New Zealanders.

"Until now there hasn't been anything prepared for the public explaining how to access needs assessments for older people. The booklet has been developed with Age Concern, Carers NZ, and the New Zealand Council of Christian Social Services.

This is the latest initiative in a number of improvements in the aged care sector. The Government is providing nine million hours in home support for older New Zealanders, and supporting 25,000 people in aged residential care.

"We have ensured that older New Zealanders are getting a good share of the $1.5 billion extra that this Government has invested in health.

"We are also delivering record levels of elective surgery, shorter cancer radiation treatment waiting times, and shorter stays in emergency departments."

"This government shared the public's concern about services for older New Zealanders and we are doing something about it."

A copy of the new booklet is also available at http://www.moh.govt.nz/moh.nsf/indexmh/needs-assessment-support-older-people?Open