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Monday, November 29, 2021

Uniting increases aged care reach into regional NSW

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Uniting NSW.ACT is acquiring four of Bupa’s residential aged care services in regional and rural New South Wales.

The not-for-profit aged care provider said the opportunity to meet the growing needs of the communities of Berry, Eden, Griffith and Tumut in Southern NSW enables it to widen its service offerings to areas where there is currently no Uniting presence.

Uniting chief executive Tracey Burton said the acquisition aligns with Uniting’s vision of increasing its role as a service provider to regional communities to meet the needs of older people by providing them with the comprehensive quality of care for which Uniting is known.

“We are passionate advocates for our “household” model of care which offers choice, control and independence to all older people, especially to those most vulnerable” Burton said.

“This vision to see senior Australians live their life to the fullest, reflects the mission of the Uniting Church, which is central to our approach.

“Uniting’s 10-year strategy calls for us to grow our impact and support vulnerable communities, with a focus on rural and regional areas,” she said.

The vision prioritises strengthening the quality and sustainability of aged care services provided within communities, by evolving with the times and enhancing service models.

“In spite of the challenges of 2021, we welcome the ability to innovate and develop as opportunities arise,” Burton said.

Uniting Ageing Executive Director Saviour Buhagiar said the Berry service particularly, is in an area where Uniting has already forged strong ties with the community.

 “We look forward to creating similar relationships and connections in Eden, Tumut and Griffith,” he said.

Uniting has been working closely with Bupa to ensure a smooth transition for staff, residents and their loved ones at the four services.

“Uniting recognises the important contribution that Bupa has made to these communities over the years and we look forward to providing continued quality and compassionate support to those entrusted in our care,” Buhagiar said.

“We want to do everything possible to welcome them all into the Uniting family over the coming months.”

Uniting will assume full responsibility for the support of older people in these services and for the staff who serve them every day, on 1 October 2021.

Bupa delivered a $71 million loss in the year to May this year for its aged care home porfolio, following a $52 million deficit in 2019.

In October 2020 it sold its home in Hobart, Tasmania to Southern Cross Care Tasmania, then later sold its aged care homes in Calwell and Stirling in Canberra (a total of 288 beds) in December last year, to Warrigal.

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