The Queensland Nurses and Midwives’ Union is delivering real outcomes for aged care nurses and carers in Queensland. 

With nearly 10,000 aged care members – and 71,000 members across all sectors – the QNMU is fighting for better pay and conditions for aged care workers.

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Together with members, we have secured some massive wins for the sector, including:

Significant pay rises for aged care nurses and carers

Thanks to a landmark case brought by the QNMU in partnership with the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (our national body), all aged care direct care workers (including RNs, ENs and carers) received a 15% increase to their wages in 2023. Award wages for AINs and carers are set to increase by an additional 12% later this year thanks to further agitation from unions, bringing the total Award rate increase for AINs and carers to 27% (depending on qualifications and experience). We are expecting a decision on further increases for Registered Nurses and Enrolled Nurses to be made later this year.

These increases are on top of the pay rises the QNMU negotiates every year for aged care nurses and carers through enterprise bargaining. 

We know the aged care sector not only needs to recruit thousands more workers to lift the quality of care, but also retain those who already work in the sector. Good wages are essential to attracting and retaining aged care nurses and carers.

New laws to ensure Registered Nurses are rostered 24/7

Thanks to years of campaigning by QNMU members, laws requiring every aged care facility to roster at least one Registered Nurse (RN) 24 hours a day, seven days a week came into effect in 2023.

The requirement was a key recommendation of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, and was a huge part of our national campaign to put more nurses back into aged care.

Mandated minimum care minutes

After years of calling for minimum care minutes in aged care, the Federal Government passed legislation requiring aged care providers to provide, on average, a minimum 200 minutes of care to every resident per day. This care must be provided by either a Registered Nurse, Enrolled Nurse, Assistant in Nursing or Personal Carer. 40 minutes of that care must be provided by a Registered Nurse.

From 1 October 2024, minimum care minutes will increase to 215 minutes of care overall and 44 minutes of RN time. 

Minimum care minutes are another step in the right direction to reforming the aged care sector. They’re about improving workloads for nurses and carers so you have more time to provide your residents with the care they need and deserve.

Sign our letter to the Minister for Aged Care and help ensure promises lead to real action! 

Sign here

Together, QNMU members are continuing to campaign for improvements to aged care staffing, workloads and transparency…

Despite the Federal Government introducing laws to fix some of the problems in aged care, we know many providers are still finding ways to avoid meeting their staffing requirements.
Now there’s a way for you to quickly and anonymously report understaffing when it happens.

It’s called Aged Care Watch – a game-changing online tool that empowers aged care nurses and carers, residents and family members to safely call out the issues impacting the quality of aged care across Australia.

Through Aged Care Watch, you can report understaffing and nursing ratios, as well as tell your story.


Visit Aged Care Watch now