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Elder abuse: Reporting elder abuse in aged care

CPD Hours



All Modules
Aged care
Managing people and resources
Law, ethics and professional responsibilities


The duty to report is an integral part of protecting some of the most vulnerable members of our society. The duty to report a suspicion or allegation of sexual assault or unreasonable use of force of an older person residing in an aged care facility is governed by The Aged Care Act 1997 (the Act).

The Act is Commonwealth legislation and applies to all those working in an ‘Approved Provider’ residential aged care facility around Australia. An Approved Provider is a residential aged care provider receiving commonwealth funds.

The Act also requires a report to be made in circumstances where a resident of an aged care facility is absent without explanation (missing).

This module discusses what is expected of those working in residential aged care facilities and how an employee should respond to a suspected notifiable incident or an allegation of a notifiable incident. It also discusses the roles and duties of employers who operate approved residential aged care facilities.

This module is not intended to provide a full discussion of elder abuse. Another module ‘Elder abuse’ goes into detail about identifying and responding to a range of different forms of elder abuse.

Learning Objective

At the end of this module participants will be able to:

  • Understand the rights of residents as they relate to sexual contact
  • Identify signs of abuse
  • Know what to report
  • Know when and how to make a report
  • Know who a report can be made to
  • Know when to make a report about a resident who is absent without explanation
  • Understand the duties of Approved Providers as they relate to mandatory reporting laws
  • Understand the duty to keep documentation
  • Understand the protections provided to people making a report

Other modules to explore