A Home care package is a package of funds provided by the Australian Government to help older people get access to services for help at home.
There are four levels of Home Care Packages, each has a different funding amount. Level 1 is for basic support; Level 4 is for people with high care needs.
Packages are managed by a Service Provider. Providers are registered and qualified to identify healthcare needs, they will coordinate and manage your services for you on your behalf. Whilst your care needs area somewhat guided by the approved package, the right provider will advocate for you to ensure you are receiving the best quality care at the right time.
Services can be categorised as follows:
- Services to keep you well and independent – including personal care, nursing services, allied health (like physiotherapy or occupational therapy).
- Services to keep you safe in your home – including cleaning, home maintenance and modifications, assistive technology.
- Services to keep you connected to your community – including transport, social support services.
- Equipment – certain assisted living aids can be provided within your approved package.
If you can afford it, you are expected to contribute to your Package, the level of contribution is based on an income-test assessment, however there are annual and lifetime limits on how much you will be asked to pay.
The majority of Australians don’t consider getting help at home until there is a healthcare crisis after which time they are forced to act. It may be a fall has triggered a hospital stay, and then help is required at home to aid recovery, or an illness has stopped a person from being able to tend to household chores or house maintenance like they used to.
The problem with this approach is that most people wait up to 12 months for a higher-level package and there are currently around 100,000 people on the waitlist.
At Mounties Care we urge members to learn as much as they can about the process by speaking to one of our specialist nurses. We will help members register early and push for higher levels if the need arises.
It is also important to know that Service Providers will ask for a percentage of your funding package. We believe you should not be paying any more than 15% of your total package in any sort of fees. If you are, please call us to discuss this; we take pride in making sure our home care clients get the maximum number of subsidised hours of care per week possible and we will advocate for your spouses to also receive services if we feel this is best for your (and their) overall healthcare needs.
Mounties Care phone line direct to registered nurses (02) 9165 0838