Coat of arms

Assistant Minister for Defence
Senator for South Australia

Minister for Senior Australians and Aged Care
Minister for Indigenous Health
Member for Hasluck

Member for Barker

Media Release
4 March 2019

New Trial Programs Improve Access to Aged Care in Barker

New trial programs have been launched which will ensure more senior Australians in Barker can access support and information about aged care services that better address their individual needs.

Under the Aged Care System Navigator initiative, the programs will offer face-to-face assistance to senior Australians and their families. The trials will also offer some services over the phone or online to maximise the reach of the trials and test the way in which these services can offer meaningful support to people navigating the aged care system.

In keeping with the Australian Government’s commitment to person-centred care, the programs offer seniors and vulnerable people who face barriers to access with new ways to find support and information about aged care services.

The programs in Barker consist of:

  • Aged care information hubs to provide locally-targeted information and build people’s capacity to engage with the aged care system; and
  • Specialist support workers to offer one-on-one support for vulnerable people and expanding access to face-to-face service.

Senator the Hon David Fawcett is confident this new trial program will have a positive impact for senior South Australians living in Aged Care facilities or exploring Aged Care options in regional areas.

“In Australia, we’re blessed with the luxury of space and vast landscapes. However the significant distances between people and necessary support services they require can be a profound obstacle,” Senator Fawcett said.

“The Federal Liberal Government is committed to trialling ways to improve how regional seniors can access these support networks, and we believe providing more opportunities to access face-to-face service among other features will be a constructive improvement.”

Member for Barker, Tony Pasin MP welcomed the trial into Barker.

“Our Government has always had a strong commitment to regional Australia and we understand that the regions are experiencing an aging population just like our city counterparts but without the same access to support services and face-to-face advice. This is a brilliant initiative for our regions and I’m very pleased to see it rollout in Barker.”

“We all want the transition into care to be as smooth as possible. Knowing your options and having continued support once in the aged care system is a key part of this. Just having piece of mind that advice is there when you need it both for the senior resident and their family is beneficial in itself,” Mr Pasin said.

The trials will be delivered by local delivery partners, Aged Rights Advocacy Service Inc, Council on the Ageing (SA) Inc, and UnitingSA Ltd, coordinated by COTA Australia.

The programs build on a trial that started in October 2018, also launched under the Aged Care System Navigator Measure. This earlier trial offers support to seniors making complex financial decisions when planning for, or entering, aged care by providing access to aged care Financial Information Service Officers (FISO) in the Department of Human Services.

The trials, as well as existing assistance offered by a number of organisations, will be independently evaluated by health and human services consultancy Australian Healthcare Associates (AHA). This evaluation will inform future policy considerations and guide the implementation of long-term models of support.

The programs in Barker will conclude in June 2020, and the FISO trials will conclude in October 2019.

Further information on the information hubs, community hubs and specialist support worker trials, including locations and local delivery partners, is available from