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February 2011

Better Aged Care Services for Older Australians from Non-English Speaking Backgrounds

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Older Australians of non-English-speaking backgrounds will benefit from better access to aged care services that meet their needs following the call today for applications for funding under the Partners in Culturally Appropriate Care (PICAC) Program.

Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Mark Butler announced that $6.6 million would be available for up to three years from 1 July 2011 under the PICAC program.

Mr Butler said that one organisation in each state and territory will receive a grant to work collaboratively with aged care service providers, the Community Partners Program and the Department of Health and Ageing.

"The core objective of projects funded under the PICAC Program is to equip aged care service providers to deliver appropriate care to older people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

"The Australian Bureau of Statistics figures from 2009 show almost a quarter of Australia's population were born overseas. The PICAC program contributes to the Gillard Government's commitment to providing access to quality care services to meet the needs of people from a culturally and linguistically diverse background," Mr Butler said.

The PICAC program is essential to improving culturally appropriate aged care through the provision of training to staff of aged care residential homes and to community based aged care services.

Further information on the Partners in Culturally Appropriate Care Program, including contact information for current PICAC providers in each state and territory, is available from www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/ageing-specneed-picac.htm .

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