Have your say on aged care staffing

Australians have just over two weeks to complete an online survey or contribute to the current national review of the aged care industry’s workforce.

Minister for Aged Care Ken Wyatt said a top priority was to ensure the industry had a strong supply of appropriately trained, skilled and resourced staff.

“To ensure adequate staffing and skills, I announced a workforce taskforce last November that is due to produce Australia’s first aged care workforce strategy by July,” Mr Wyatt said.

Chronic pain needs GP assessment

Australians who suffer pain for longer than three months are being urged to consult their doctor to have their condition checked.

Not-for-profit medical information service NPS MedicineWise this week launched a program on neuropathic pain, sometimes known as ‘nerve pain’, experienced by one in 20 Australians.

NPS Medicinewise’s Dr Andrew Boyden said if pain persisted for more than three months, it became a form of chronic pain.

“Working out if neuropathic pain is behind the patient’s discomfort will help them to receive the best treatment,” Dr Boyden said.

Failure to switch providers costs millions

Laziness and fear of change are costing Australians around $10 million a year, a new survey shows.

Comparison website finder.com.au said 45 per cent of adults planned to switch at least one provider for services such as banking, energy, health insurance, telephone and pay TV, this year. However, 55 per cent – or more than 10 million people – would not change and their reluctance to act could cost them thousands of dollars.

Finder’s Bessie Hassan said Australians should review their monthly outgoings and consider switching to save money.

Missed calls from overseas may be scams

Australians are being warned to beware of missed calls or ‘Wangiri’ scams in which scammers call and let the phone ring once before hanging up without leaving a message.

‘Wangiri’ is a Japanese term that roughly means ‘one and cut’ in which a missed call will appear on your phone from an international number.

If you call the number back, you may be put on hold, hear music, or the scammer could try and chat with you.

Heavy snorers can age faster

A new study shows heavy snorers can damage their DNA, making their cells age faster and increasing the risk of cancer.

The researchers at West China Hospital, in China’s Sichuan province, found that snorers have shorter telomeres, the tiny caps at the end of chromosomes that prevent genetic material from unravelling and fraying.

The shorter telomeres indicated rapid ageing and increased susceptibility to cancer, the researchers said.

“This has implications for the treatment and prevention of future health problems,” the study added.

Unsustainable stress on carers of the aged

Carers are urging the government to release more home care packages for the aged, in line with National Seniors’ call for more support for older people living in the community.

Carers Australia’s Ara Cresswell said the current caps on the number of home care packages and the long waiting times before aged people could access packages of support for which they had been deemed eligible shifted heavy care loads onto family and friends.

“Many of these carers are aged themselves and have decreasing capacity to take on a hefty and exhausting caring role,” Ms Cresswell said.

Carers needed to help develop app

The Ageing Revolution and QUT are looking for carers and those they care for to take part in an interactive workshop.

The workshop is part of a Queensland Government grant to develop a mobile app that will assist carers and those they care for. 

Register by clicking on this link.

The workshop will be held on Tuesday, 20 March, from 10am to 2pm at the QUT Kelvin Grove Campus, Z9 Block.

This is where I belong

Celebrate Queensland Women’s Week by joining Access Arts in an exciting two-day workshop combining theatre, storytelling, music, dance and visual arts.

The This is where I belong workshop will be held on Saturday 10 March, 12.30pm to 4.30pm and Sunday 11 March, 9am to 4pm at the Taylor Range Golf Club, 28 Greenlanes Road, Ashgrove.

Women of all ages are invited to participate in the two-day workshop, which will involve participants showcasing their creations to the community at the end of the event.


250 people develop dementia daily

New figures show more than 425,000 Australians are living with dementia, with an estimated 250 people developing the disease each day.

Dementia Australia’s Maree McCabe said while there was no cure for dementia, the right support, information and help could make a life-changing difference to people living with the condition.

“There is a perception in the community that nothing can be done following a diagnosis of dementia,” Ms McCabe said.

Do we need 'anti-spying' laws to protect consumers?

Independent federal MP and anti-pokies campaigner Andrew Wilkie has told parliament the poker machine and pub arm of Woolworths has been spying on its punters to boost profits.

Mr Wilkie said venues kept databases of customers, which were shared among members of the Australian Leisure and Hospitality Group (ALH Group), a subsidiary of Woolworths.

The databases contained personal information, such as gambling and drinking habits, which ALH allegedly used to encourage increased gambling. Mr Wilkie called on ALH to destroy the information it holds about its customers.

This is not the first time Mr Wilkie has attacked the gambling industry. Do you think his concerns are legitimate and should lead to new laws to stamp out ‘spying’ on the unsuspecting? Or is this just another way businesses capture information about your spending patterns and consumers are fair game?

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