Issues relating to the pay equity settlement will be brought to the negotiating table by aged care providers for next year’s ARRC Services Agreement.
The New Zealand Aged Care Association (NZACA) expects pay equity issues to take precedence in the upcoming A21 negotiations with the DHB Shared Services. The Association has asked for feedback from its members to be submitted today to help guide its ARRC submission, due at the end of October.
Meanwhile Care Association New Zealand (CANZ) would like to see more flexibility built into the ARRC contract.
“There’s no room to move,” said director Victoria Brown of the current contract.
For example, Brown says CANZ members would like to see the structure of the TLA rate re-examined, particularly for Auckland facilities.
She also holds great concern for stand-alone providers, and would like to see some acknowledgement in the ARRC contract of the challenges faced by these providers, particularly those offering rest-home level care.
NZACA chief executive Simon Wallace says it is unlikely they will be pushing for funding relating to ambulance charges and bariatric care, as these issues were addressed in this year’s contract.
However, he expects there to be some crossover between ARRC contract negotiations and the Funding Model Review, which is due to get underway soon.
This year’s ARRC contract saw providers receive an increase of 1.8 per cent, the largest increase in recent years. However, many providers felt it wasn’t enough to address the historic funding shortfall faced by the sector.
Wallace is reluctant to speculate whether next year’s increase will hit the two per cent mark.
“As for percentage increase, it will need to cover the legislated caregiver and support work increases from 1 July 2018, but I wouldn’t want to put a figure on it just yet,” said Wallace.