Campaspe Council appoints new disability and aged care provider

By Lachlan Durling

INTEREACH will be the new provider of aged and disability services for Campaspe Shire when council withdraws from being a provider.

It comes after an in-principle decision was made in May last year to withdraw, as reforms to aged and disability care made it difficult for council to compete effectively or viably in the sector.

The Federal Government advised council of its approval of Intereach Limited, following council nominating it as the preferred provider.

Mayor Adrian Weston said it followed a competitive expression of interest process to deliver the service late last year.

“Intereach met the four guiding principles set by council to ensure the interests of our clients, families and carers, our staff and the community were protected,” he said.

“Intereach has similar values to council’s, will ensure equity of services across the shire, has demonstrated a strong safety system to protect both staff and clients, as well as providing a commitment to quality care.”

The provider has about 50 years’ experience working alongside remote, rural and regional communities, in both NSW and Victoria.

Intereach chief executive Keryn Fox said she was delighted with the announcement.

“This is a natural progression for Intereach, as we’re already delivering these programs in the Riverina region, and we’re now looking forward to increasing our services in the Campaspe Shire,” she said.

Through the council assessment process, Cr Weston said Intereach demonstrated an understanding of the complexities associated with geographic isolation and how this affects equity of access to services and supports.

He said they demonstrated a commitment to using flexible models of service delivery to ensure access to services.

“With a large geographic area and clients spread across our shire, this was particularly important to ensure clients were not isolated and continued to be able to access services,” Cr Weston said.

Intereach has a number of long-term contracts with both federal and state governments, demonstrating evidence of successfully passing external audits.

“For council, this demonstrated evidence of their ability to provide quality care, while meeting the same rigorous standards that council has been required to meet,” Cr Weston said.

Council will cease delivering all funded and brokerage aged and disability services on June 30.

Council said staff were working with Intereach to ensure a seamless process for clients.

Intereach Aged Care Services senior manager Michael Harding said the organisation looked forward to working to help clients maintain their quality of life through a range of support programs.

“Intereach looks forward to working with Campaspe Shire residents to deliver such important programs that help ensure senior residents and those living with a disability maintain their health and independence with support in their home,” he said.