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Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety - Terms of Reference explained

Victor Harcourt

In anticipation of the Commissioners releasing a scoping document which defines more precisely the areas the Commission will cover, Russell Kennedy has reviewed the Terms of Reference. We have analysed each Term to assist providers in understanding from a high level what the Commission is likely to enquire into.

Terms of Reference Diagram

This document for download has been designed to clarify the key issues under each of the Terms by simplifying how each is likely to be treated before the Commission.

We have identified four key themes (Quality, Safety, Sustainability and Person-Centred Care) which feature in 13 relevant domains in which providers will likely be expected to speak to and evaluate their performance against before the Royal Commission. We have then anticipated the likely approach the Commission will take with each of the Terms: Policy Inquiry or Investigatory Examination. 


Next Steps  

The dedicated Royal Commission website has gone live and you can access it here. Information about how approved providers and the wider public can engage with the Commission is yet to be placed on the website but the website will hold all of the source information from the Commission. 

Once the scoping document has been settled by the Commissioners, we will then begin receiving Press Releases from the Commission followed by Practice Guidelines which will assist with defining the administrative practices the Commissioners will be adopting. 


Our Recommendation 

We reiterate to providers that Legal Risk Assessments are vital at this time. Knowing your vulnerabilities and undertaking strategic remedial action to shore up your position against each of the Terms will go some way to ensuring that your organisation’s experience of the Royal Commission is positive.

We also recommend that your organisation begins to quantify its risk of being called for evidence and whether your advisors have sufficient aged care expertise to identify the key risk issues that will be played out before the Royal Commission.


For further resources, we encourage you to visit our Royal Commission webpage which is updated regularly with insights and materials.
If you would like more information please contact Victor Harcourt from our Aged Care team. 
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