Caring for yourself by yourself – also known as independent living – can get more difficult the older you get.
For many elderly Australians, a home care package will enable you to live on your own terms in the comfort of your own home.
Offered by any number of home care package providers, home care funding is consumer-directed, which means you have the flexibility and opportunity to choose the provider you want and the care you require to continue living the independent life you want.
The different options and levels available to you will allow you to choose the exact services that suit your individual requirements via the available home care package providers.
Are You Eligible?
Essentially, your eligibility will be determined through an overall assessment by a qualified healthcare provider.
An assessment of your eligibility can be conducted through My Aged Care.
If this assessment deems that a home care package will be best suited for your needs, an Aged Care Assessment Team will plan a time to visit your home with the goal of determining which level of service you require.
The team will then approve you for one of the four different levels of care which will depend on how much help you need to live independently.
Home care is typically for elderly people who need ongoing or more complex support than is available through the general Commonwealth Home Support Programme.
Therefore, if you need more than a few discrete or occasional services, then home care is most likely an ideal option for you.
Home Care Package Service Levels
You’ll be approved for a certain level of service, depending how much support you require to keep living independently. Each service level includes a set amount of funds supplied by the government, which will be paid to the home care provider or providers you choose.
Furthermore, and depending on your income, you may be asked to contribute to the cost of your home care package yourself.
Some home care package providers will ask you to pay a basic daily fee, which is typically a percentage of your basic age pension.
You may also need to pay an income-tested care fee if your income is high enough.
Service levels include:
- Level 1, $9,000 for basic needs, $9.63 for basic daily fee
- Level 2, $15,740 for low care needs, $10.16 for basic daily fee
- Level 3, $34,500 for intermediate care needs, $10.48 for basic daily fee
- Level 4, $52,250 for high care, $10.75 for basic daily fee
What Services are Included?
Each level of home care, as mentioned above, will include a variety of services, and you’re able to choose how you want to spend the funds based on your individual needs.
These services include:
- Health and Nursing Care
- Personal Care
- Home Maintenance
- Social Care
Be sure to discuss your needs with any of the home care package providers you speak to so they can appropriately guide you on what services they believe you require.
What Services are NOT Included?
Although there are choices of services and choices for preferred home care package providers, there are some services that aren’t covered. Typically speaking, anything that you would normally buy using your income doesn’t qualify for funding.
For example, buying groceries aren’t covered but special food purchases for enteral feeding requirements are included.
Other exclusions include paying your rent or mortgage, entertainment activities such as tickets to events and memberships, holidays and vacations, and more.
If you’re looking at engaging any of the various home care package providers available to you, be sure to read up on as much information as you can (including this article) to ensure you are well-informed about what you can expect.