The Australian Government’s Home Care Packages Program helps you to live independently in your own home for as long as you can. The Program provides a subsidy towards a package of care, services and case management to meet your personal needs.
There are four levels of home care packages. A professional assessor will work with you to find out if a home care package is the right service for you, which level of service you need and when you might need it.
The four package levels are structured as follows:
Level 1 supports people with basic care needs
Level 2 supports people with low-level care needs
Level 3 supports people with intermediate care needs
Level 4 supports people with high-level care needs.
Each level of home care package provides a different subsidy amount. This amount is paid to an approved home care provider that you have selected. The subsidy contributes to the total cost of your service and care delivery. It is also expected that you will contribute to the cost of your care where your personal circumstances allow. You can find out more on the subsidy rates at the Department of Health’s website www.agedcare.health.gov.au
What can home care package funds be used for?
The types of services that you can purchase under a home care package include but are not limited to:
Personal services: assistance with personal activities such as bathing, showering, toileting, dressing and undressing, mobility and
Nutrition, hydration, meal preparation and diet: assistance with preparing meals, including special diets for health, religious, cultural
or other reasons, assistance with using eating utensils and assistance with feeding
Continence management: assistance in using continence aids and appliances such as disposable pads and absorbent aids, commode
chairs, bedpans and urinals, catheter and urinary drainage appliances, and enemas
Mobility and dexterity: providing crutches, quadruped walkers,walking frames, walking sticks, mechanical devices for lifting, bed rails,
slide sheets, sheepskins, tri-pillows, pressure-relieving mattresses and assistance using these aids
Nursing, allied health and therapy services: for example, this may include speech therapy, podiatry, occupational or physiotherapy
services and other clinical services such as hearing and vision services
Transport and personal assistance: assistance with shopping,visiting health practitioners and attending social activities
Management of skin integrity: assistance with bandages, dressings and skin emollients.
home care package may also support the use of:
Telehealth: video conferencing and digital technology (including remote monitoring) to increase access to timely and appropriate care
Assistive technology: such as devices that assist mobility, communication and personal safety
Aids and equipment: particularly those that assist a person to perform daily living tasks can be purchased using funds from your package
budget.Your Home Care Agreement needs to specify whether it is leased or who owns the item and who is responsible for ongoing maintenance and repair costs.
Approved home care providers will work in partnership with you to tailor care and services to best support your needs and goals.
What can’t home care package funds be used for?
Home care package funds cannot be used as a general source of income for items such as day-to-day bills, food, mortgage payments or rent as an example. You can find a full list of exclusions on www.myagedcare.gov.au
Can I get a home care package?
If you have not already been assessed by an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) for a Home Care Package you (or your nominated representative) need to contact My Aged Care on 1800 200 422. The contact centre staff will ask you questions to help them understand your needs and care arrangements to inform the next steps.
The contact centre staff may then:
arrange a face-to-face assessment of your needs that takes place in your own home by a trained assessor
refer you for aged care services, reflecting any preferences you have for particular service providers
provide you with aged care information and details on services that may assist you.
They will also ask your permission to create a personalised client record. This will hold up-to-date information on your needs, the results of any assessments and any services that you receive. The client record will reduce the need for you to retell your story.
You can also nominate family and friends as your representatives. They will then be able to view your client record on the My Aged Care system and can act as a representative on your behalf to discuss your care needs and receive any mail relating to your home care package.