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Village passes standards test

Monday, 29th September, 2014

By Andrew Robertson

City Council says it has passed an audit on Shorty O'Neil Village which failed to meet aged care standards earlier this year.

Council was slapped with sanctions after the hostel failed to meet 15 of 44 accreditation standards following an audit by the Australian Aged Care Quality Agency in June.

The NSW Department of Health said residents were not receiving appropriate clinical care, clinical decisions were being made by unqualified staff, and care was not being appropriately planned, assessed or monitored.

Clinical incidents also were either not being reported or not being acted on, according to the department.

The agency conducted another reaccreditation audit last week.

"We have been recommended for compliance on all outcomes," Council's deputy general manager Sharon Hutch said.

"We now await formal notification."

Bringing the hostel up to scratch has come at a cost to Council, which was forced to employ a nursing adviser for six months, as well as provide training to staff.

"We do have an additional cost associated with an extra nurse following the audit earlier this year," Ms Hutch told the BDT.

Council implemented a new operational structure at the village in July which resulted in the loss of 20 jobs.

The restructure was in response to an exodus of residents from the hostel after Council announced it was closing the village in 2016.

Council forked out over $800,000 in redundancy payments which it expects to make up in the first 12 months after the closure.

Council now employs two fulltime staff and a part-time employee at the village with the bulk of the work performed by nine agency staff.

Ms Hutch said just 11 residents now remain at the 40-bed village.

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