Mrs. Zhang transferred to Happy Living from another Home Care Package provider two months ago. The staff from her former provider offered some help in the application for her Home Care Package, she said, so once the allowance was officially issued, she joined them spontaneously. But in fact, Mrs. Zhang had encountered numerous problems within one year after she joined. The most obvious one of those was the high cost of fees, and the complicated process when Mrs. Zhang wanted the option to use other services.
By then, Mrs. Zhang was being charged an administrative fee of 40%, and for an hour of general service nearly $60, which led to very limited service hours being available to her. And when she posed her need for physiotherapy, her Case Manager had to report to various higher authorities within the compnay which took almost two months before finally being approved. And after being approved was forced to attend a designated clinic, 40mins drive away from her.
According to Mrs. Zhang, the only reason she had stayed with that provider was because of her service worker Xu, who took such good care of her. Xu was in charge of most of Mrs. Zhang’s house chores, including cooking, cleaning, and driving her to shopping and physiotherapy, etc. Mrs. Zhang found that both her and Xu had a lot in common, and Xu took care of her in great detail. A lot of things that the Case Manager was supposed to be responsible for, had been done by Xu. This was why Aunt Zhang was willing to pay such a high service fee of $60 per hour. She thought it was not easy to find a service worker as good of a fit as Xu. Even though there were a lot of things that Aunt Zhang wasn’t happy with about the provider, she got Xu’s care.
Later, Mrs. Zhang called Happy Living for a consultation after she read in the newspaper that she would be able to use her current service personnel if she decided to join. Kindly reminded by the intake consultant at Happy Living, Aunt Zhang had a chat with Xu and found out that only $30 out of the $60 service fee she paid was paid to Xu, the rest of which was paid directly to the HCP provider. This knowledge strengthened her determination to leave.
Xu provided documents such as her ABN, police check and insurance to Happy Living when Mrs. Zhang transferred, and successfully signed a Service Provider Agreement with Happy Living. Xu is now able to continue her service provision to Mrs. Zhang. But unlike before, to enjoy Xu’s service, Aunt Zhang pays only $45 per hour, which is paid directly to Xu in total amount. In other words, Xu earns more than she used to providing the same services, and Aunt Zhang pays less. This is the result of direct communication and negotiation between Aunt Zhang and Xu.
On the other hand, Mrs. Zhang finally doesn’t have to travel all the way to get physiotherapy since joining Happy Living. Her Care Coordinator recommended another physiotherapist to her who can provide door to door service. Mrs. Zhang said she was glad that she decided to start using the self-management model during the pandemic. It not only saves her a large amount of administrative expenses, but also enables her to access far more choices of services in this special period with lower prices. She can simply enjoy physiotherapy treatment at home instead of spending two hours on the road.