Addressing neglected contexts of ageing: The situation in remote northern Australia

Addressing neglected contexts of ageing: The situation in remote northern Australia Journal Article

Ager

  • Author(s): Gibb, Heather
  • Published: 2020
  • ISBN: 1578-7168

Abstract: This paper examines why many older people living in remote parts of northern Australia areunable to access appropriate, or in some cases, any care services to support ageing in place. Several major factorsare identified from the research literature as impacting on what appears to be a neglect of support for ageing innorthern regions of Australia. The first is geographical and population related challenges. The second is theAustralian Government’s adoption of neoliberal market models in structuring its aged care service organisation andprovision. The third factor is the dearth of model design fit-for-purpose to the needs of remote communities. Analternative grounded or ‘bottom up’ approach is proposed, based on evidence from a broad range of relevantresearch into remote communities, as well as local case studies in northern Australia. Findings from a case study arepresented that further illuminate areas of neglect in supporting ageing in remote communities. A key argumentbased on these findings is for a more flexible funding base that approaches the design and management of servicesat a community rather than an individual level. Important themes emerging from this discussion include theuniqueness of need in each remote community; the critical importance of drawing on local understanding of thekind of resource needs that exist in a community before ‘rolling’ out support services, and finally; the capacity oflocal community members through volunteering, to stretch and adapt resources to solve practical problemsassociated with ageing in remote places.

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Suggested Citation
Gibb, Heather, 2020, Addressing neglected contexts of ageing: The situation in remote northern Australia, Journal Article, viewed 30 March 2020, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=16481.

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