20 Feb 2016

Travel compo for care workers just a start

12:49 pm on 20 February 2016

A law change requiring workers to be paid for travel between clients is a step in the right direction, but the government needs to also review the way it funds these services, say care providers.

Elderly hands (file photo)

Photo: 123rf

More than 23,000 workers will now be compensated for the time and costs of travel between jobs.

Chief executive of the Home and Community Health Association Julie Haggie said the law was a win for both workers and employers because the industry was struggling with high turnover, and this would help attract and retain the best staff.

But she said the difference in funding levels by government agencies also needed to be addressed.

"It's funded by multiple funders, district health boards, Ministry of Health, ACC, and there's still a 27 percent difference between what the top payer pays to the bottom payer, for no reason for the same service."

Julie Haggie said standardisation of funding would help make the industry more sustainable.