Conference: Too Many Young People "Rotting Away" In Nursing
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
June 17, 2003
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA--The governments of Australia and New Zealand need to take immediate action to stop the growth in the number of young people housed in nursing homes, an audience at a Melbourne conference were told Monday.
More than 400 delegates were on hand for the national conference on Alternatives for Young People in Nursing Homes, which continues for the next two days.
Nearly 6,000 people with disabilities under the age of 65 are currently housed in nursing facilities across the two countries, according to a brief story from The Age news service.
In the Australian state of New South Wales alone, government figures show that the number of young people admitted to such facilities has doubled since 1990. There are 2,500 young people with disabilities such as cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, or brain injuries "rotting away in aged care nursing homes", one delegate said.
"For too many years now this issue has gone unresolved," said conference spokesperson Bronwyn Morkham.
"We are looking for leadership from the commonwealth to provide other options so these people can live in dignity," she explained.
Morkham said the conference would explore the option of shared accommodation with 24-hour care for young people.