National Seniors welcomes new aged care watchdog

National Seniors Australia has welcomed the Federal Government’s announcement of a new watchdog for the aged care industry, which will serve as a one-stop shop for complaints.

Aged Care Minister Ken Wyatt said yesterday the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission, due to start work on 1 January 2019, was designed to promote transparency in the industry.

It follows the Carnell-Paterson review into failures at South Australia’s Oakden Older Persons Mental Health Service last year, which led to its closure.

Health minister urges seniors to have free flu vaccine

More than 4.5 million Australians who are most at risk during this year’s flu season can now access a free influenza vaccine under the Federal Government’s National Immunisation Program.  

Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said last year was Australia’s worst for influenza in almost a decade, mirroring a global trend, with more than 250,000 Australians testing positive for influenza and double the normal hospitalisations.  

He urged all Australians to consider having a flu shot this year.

Take time to prepare an advance care directive

Australians are being urged to start a conversation this week with friends and family about what you value in your life.

With National Advance Care Planning Week finishing at the weekend, National Seniors’ Chief Advocate Ian Henschke said now was the time to begin the process of putting a plan in place to ensure you can be heard, even if you are unable to speak for yourself.

Mr Henschke is an ambassador for National Advance Care Planning Week and joined the initiative designed to raise awareness of the need for people to make their future health care preferences known.


Free dementia prevention course available

The University of Tasmania is offering a free, four-week online course on Preventing Dementia as a companion to its Understanding Dementia program.

Offered through its Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC), the two courses are free and build on the latest in international research on dementia.

The Preventing Dementia MOOC course features global experts explaining how lifestyle and health factors interact to increase or decrease dementia risk, based on the latest scientific evidence.


Maggie T re-emerges at Millers

Devotees of the Maggie T fashion label will be rejoicing with its relaunch online tomorrow and in stores next week across Australia.

The brand was purchased recently by the Speciality Fashion Group (SFG), and will be available at 175 of its 330 Millers stores nationally and in New Zealand from next Monday.

One of Australia’s best-known plus-size brands, Maggie T went into administration late last December after reportedly struggling to pay its debts in the lead up to Christmas.


Vegemite moves upmarket

We’ve all read the stories about Millennials not being able to afford house deposits because they spend too much eating avocado on toast at trendy cafes.

Now Britain’s Mirror website has reported a NSW man being charged $7 for vegemite toast for what he expected would be a ‘nice and normal’ snack.

But when the waiter arrived with his meal, it’s fair to say the customer couldn’t believe what was on his plate. He posted a photo of the meal on social media with the caption: “Gourmet vegemite on toast. This is just ridiculous.”


Seniors urged to seek financial advice before joining Airbnb

National Seniors Australia has voiced its support for a partnership announced yesterday between the NSW Government and Airbnb to encourage more seniors to sign up to the home sharing platform.

But Chief Advocate Ian Henschke said involvement as hosts could have some serious impacts for retirees and pensioners, who should seek detailed advice before opening their homes to paying guests.

“On the surface, this looks like a great way to meet new people and earn some extra income,” Mr Henschke said.

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