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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 03 Hansard (Wednesday, 17 March 2010) . . Page.. 1000 ..

MS BRESNAN: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Is there a time frame for the remaining three people whom you have mentioned, and since last year have any additional people been in the same position in terms of looking to transition from hospital to the home?

MS BURCH: The time frame for the sixth is that we hope to have that person transitioned out into her accommodation of May last year. Ms Bresnan, there is no designated time frame because it is around working on a case-by-case basis with these clients and their families to ensure that we have systems in place. It is broader than just building accommodation. It is around making sure that their health and wellbeing can be catered for, whether they move into individual houses or whether they move into group houses. As I have said, that is something that is not taken easily or lightly, but we continue to work with individuals who seek to transition to the community.

MS LE COUTEUR: Supplementary, Mr Speaker?

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Le Couteur.

MS LE COUTEUR: What are the ACT government’s latest predictions on the unmet need for individual support package funding?

MS BURCH: We work through families and communities to address need in the community. Once we have increased, we have increased significantly. I think our respite hours have increased by 98 per cent. There is a 30 per cent increase in residential hours in overnight respite. Disability spends $58 million annually on a range of disability support services. We work with families to meet need. It is a juggling act. We have an increased resource, but it is a limited, finite, resource. There is no firm science around how we meet demand. We know what we know, but there could be people out there that we are not aware of that could also choose to access services. We continue to work with those clients that we have on a needs basis and we work with families to ensure that we are able to allocate the resources.

MR SPEAKER: Ms Porter, a supplementary?

MS PORTER: A supplementary. Minister, isn’t the exit strategy for people in these circumstances a clinical decision based on a collaborative effort between the patient, the clinical staff and support staff, and thus the timing is dependent on these deliberations?

Mr Hanson: No, it was based on money, wasn’t it, minister?

MR SPEAKER: I call Minister Burch. You will have your chance in a moment, Mr Hanson.

MS BURCH: It is absolutely about making sure that we have accommodation that suits their physical needs and their requirements and that we have resource support services that meet their needs. This is not something—we will not be discharging or transitioning people out of hospital to put them at risk in any way, shape or form.

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