Territory Stories

Debates Day 5 - Wednesday 28 February 2001



Debates Day 5 - Wednesday 28 February 2001

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Parliamentary Record 27


Debates for 8th Assembly 1997 - 2001; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 8th Assembly 1997 - 2001




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Wednesday 28 February 2001 We think we should be judged on our policies and the trends. That is why I devoted some time in my statement to talking about the community aged- care packages and the transition arrangements. They provide another option. There is often some wariness by those responsible for discharging people. They want to make sure adequate care arrangements in the family home are in place. As pointed out by previous speakers, often the carer is ftail and ageing also. Those who are discharging people have to be very carefully that they embrace issues relating to mobility impairment or cognitive impairment, and the difficulties in getting people back to their own homes. It is still the fundamental position and belief of this government that people should be cared for in their own home for as long as possible, and for as long as the family is capable. Thats where our strengthening goes. We go to providing assistance to families. I can speak from personal experience, with some of my ageing relatives having been very well cared for in the Salvation Army Nursing Home over a period of some years. There are difficulties caring for people with dementia and mobility problems. Im happy to put on the record that both my wife and my daughter have worked in this area as carers in nursing homes; its very heavy work, very hard work. It is work that requires a certain disposition and compassion, but it is very rewarding work. It is work, unlike a lot of nursing areas, where you have a passing parade of patients because of the throughput. Geriatric nursing can be very rewarding. You have the privilege of talking to the same people for a long time and getting to know them personally and, in the case of nursing home settings, getting to know their families as well. The matters of social comfort were covered by the member for Nightcliff. This government works very hard - including the seniors minister, the sport and recreation minister, the arts minister, and the housing minister, as we heard today - to ensure that we involve our seniors. We know that Territorians are the net beneficiary of their contribution. I tum now to how many Territorians are being cared for in hospital today and who are awaiting nursing home beds: Royal Darwin, 12; Alice Springs, 1; Gove, 2; Tennant Creek, 0; Katherine, 2; a total of 17. I am not going to say that is acceptable. I reiterate what I said during the committee stage of the budget debate: To have someone who is nursing home appropriate in a hospital is not the best option. If they have attendant medical conditions, often there is a difficulty in making sure that they are discharged to an appropriate place. Those statistics, however, would be replicated around Australia. The member for Wanguri talked about waiting for a bed to come up. The sad fact is that, when a bed comes up, it is often as a result of a death. Its rare for people to be discharged from nursing homes into other settings. Nursing homes are often their last place of abode, and hopefully for many years for many. Often it is the final resort. This business of government hurrying the list up has a goulish side. It is not predictable. We are dealing with humans; it is not a easy to have a scientific approach to when beds might become available because of people dying. The Northern Territory government is a signatory to the Commonwealth, state and territory strategy on healthy ageing. Its what the opposition called a glossy, but it is a good glossy because it talks about all sorts of wonderful things. It has a lovely colour photo of myself, along with the other state and territory ministers who have responsibility in this area. By virtue of elections, many of them have passed on. For those people who need to know the fundamental basis for what we do, this document will provide it. It strips away much of the rhetoric of why we are doing business. There is a master plan; there is a goal. We have committed people within the public service. We have shown we have the wherewithal, the capacity, and the funding. We have shown, also, that, as a government, we have the compassion to make sure that those Territorians who are in their twilight years will have a comfortable place to reside in the Territory, and they will have a government that looks after them - this CLP government. Motion agreed to; statement noted. MINISTERIAL STATEMENT Native Title - Impediments to Resource Development Mr MANZIE (Resource Development): Mr Speaker, I wish to detail to the House some important matters being dealt with by the government as we seek to encourage mining and exploration in the Northern Territory. It is evident from the limited number of mining operations that ore deposits of economic value are rare and difficult to find. Ore bodies cannot be created where we might like them to be. They are products of nature and have to be found where they exist. To do this requires the application of cutting- edge technology by mineral and petroleum explorers, and access to land on which ore bodies may be found. 7525

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