Managing the tension between emergency management policy decisions and residential aged care facility planning in South Australia
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In Australia all residential aged care facilities applying for new Australian Government funded aged care places, must demonstrate planning for environmental disaster threats such as bushfires and floods (Department of Health and Ageing, 2011). This policy was introduced in 2009 following the catastrophic bushfires in Victoria, Australia. Added to this Australian policy decision was the adoption by the State Government of South Australia of a new fire danger rating scale, with the inclusion of an extreme level weather warning called catastrophic or code-red. This rating requires all services and community members living in bushfire prone areas, to assess their risk and decide whether or not to evacuate from the catastrophic zone the day before or morning of a code-red weather warning. This paper discusses the issues these Australian and state government emergency management policy decisions are having on the management of residential aged care facilities.
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