How home care packages have changed

Older Australians who rely on help around the home now have more choice in how their home care packages are delivered. How will these changes benefit consumers?

Announced as part of the 2015/16 Federal Budget, the first stage of the Increasing Choice in Home Care measure was implemented on 27 February 2017. 

From this date, individual consumers now have control of the budget or their home care packages, rather than approved providers, which was the previous provision.

The change means that consumers can choose a provider to ensure they receive the services they require, delivered by a means that suits them best. Consumers can now simply advise the Government how they wish the funds to be distributed.

The move not only gives the consumer control of their own home care budget, it also means that if they receive poor service, they can easily switch providers. Also, should the consumer move, either within their own state or interstate, the home care package can simply be transferred.

The change is expected to benefit more than 100,000 customers over the next year and the outlined changes mean:

  • funding for home care packages is fully portable
  • when changing providers, any unspent funds – less account fees – will be directed to their new provider
  • process for becoming a new provider will be more streamlined

To find out more about these changes, future changes and how you may be affected, visit agedcare.health.gov.au

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Written by Debbie McTaggart

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