Australia

Call for action after Qld aged care report

Queensland nurses are calling on Malcolm Turnbull's government to take action after an audit of aged care facilities revealed the impact of understaffing.

Queensland's nursing and midwifery union is calling on the federal government to legislate staffing in privately-run aged care facilities in the wake of damning findings of widespread understaffing and neglect.

A secret audit of 70 aged care facilities led by Queensland's Nurses and Midwives Union on Saturday has revealed stories of delayed medical attention, underqualified staff and increased risks to residents as a result of understaffing.

QNMU president Beth Mohle said it was time the federal government introduced staff to resident ratio laws for privately-run care providers.

"Behind closed doors, in almost every city and town, registered nurses are being left to look after up to 200 residents at a time," she said.

"While nurses and other staff are doing their best, they simply can't meet the demand for care under those circumstances."

The audit found one central Queensland resident was forced to wait for 48 hours for an ambulance after breaking a hip, as well as delayed treatment to fractures, and a poor standard of care due to increased pressures on staff.

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