Jody and brother Brendan McDonald have struggled for two years to get their father, Steven McDonald, disability support accommodation. He has been in hospital for two years as a result.
Jody and brother Brendan McDonald have struggled for two years to get their father, Steven McDonald, disability support accommodation. He has been in hospital for two years as a result. Ava Benny-Morrison

People with disabilities 'will have the option of private care'

NON-government agencies provide a roof over the heads of 11,000 people with disabilities in Queensland while the government struggles to help 1000.

The situation could soon be handled entirely outside of government, paving the way for thousands of people with disabilities to leave hospitals and enter private care.

The State Government has accepted a recommendation in the Commission of Audit to transfer all services from the government-run Accommodation Support and Respite Service provides to non-government organisations.

ASRS provides short-term respite accommodation for people with disabilities and high-level care in government-owned accommodation.

The move follows the story of a Mackay family who has been fighting for 15 months to move their brain injured father out of hospital and into disability accommodation.

Premier Campbell Newman said the ASRS cost $140 million and had 1091 clients.

In a startling contrast, non-government organisations spent $480 million providing the same services to more than 11,104 Queenslanders with a disability

"This means the government-run services are more than three times the price of the NGO sector," he said.

"These reforms will allow the government to provide more services to more people and for a progressive move to client choice and control, which my government is fully supportive of."

APN Newsdesk reported yesterday that Queensland taxpayers were forking out more than $1000 a day to keep sports massage therapist Steven McDonald in hospital while he waited for external and much cheaper accommodation with high-level care to become available.

Owing to high demand and limited resources, Disability Services Queensland stated it was unable to provide immediate access to the support the family wanted.


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