Aged care bungle: OAM recipient approved for home months after death
CHAMPION of the people, the late member for Barron River, Martin Tenni, spent the last two years of his life waiting for aged care that never materialised.
The former Mareeba Shire councillor and OAM recipient would be approved for the help in January 2020, four months after his death at 85.
"My husband was asking to get it, he wanted a better life for himself," Dawn Tenni said. "It's a bit disappointing and I was left disillusioned by the whole thing."
She said her husband had endured declining health after surgery for a pacemaker, four hip surgeries and treatment for melanomas.
"He waited two years to get approval for a home care plan and died in the process," Ms Tenni said.
"The waiting time would be too long for most people. Someone must have to die before someone else can get a go.
"Two years is too long for someone with heart problems."
Ms Tenni said a health worker suggested aged care during one of Mr Tenni's numerous hospital stays.
"They did say it would take 12 months. Those health workers are well meaning but can't do anything about it," she said.
"They really should explain that you are not going to get it for a long, long, time."
The federal department of health would not comment on the case but said care was assigned according to priority - those considered less urgent can wait for longer than 12 months.
"The government acknowledges that any wait for a Home Care Package is frustrating," a spokesman said. "Significant government investment … is seeing wait times fall."
Originally published as Aged care bungle: OAM recipient approved for home after death