Consumer Directed Care Respite Care
Consumer Directed Care for carers is identified as Consumer Directed Respite Care (CDRC).
CDRC gives carers a greater say and more control over the design and delivery of respite services provided to them and the person/s they care for. CDRC allows carers to make choices about the types of respite services they access and the delivery of thsoe services, including who will deliver the services and when. Expected outcomes of CDRC for both carers and the person/s they care for include a better quality of life due to increased independence and empowerment over the services they are receiving.
CDRC allows carers to take a break from their caring role and provides greater control over the respite care services/supports they receive.
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What is a CDRC package of services?The Australian Government provides funding to 31 selected Commonwealth Respite and Carelink Centres across Australia to deliver CDRC packages under the National Respite for Carers Program (NRCP). The NRCP is one of several initiatives designed to support and assist relatives and friends caring at home for people who are unable to care for themselves because of disability or frailty.
There are 54 Commonwealth Respite and Carelink Centres across Australia that are run by a wide variety of community organisations in metropolitan, rural and remote regions across Australia. Centres can help when carers need to take a break from their caring role by arranging respite. They do this by acting as a single contact for information needed by carers and by organising, purchasing, or managing respite services for carers.
Examples of respite services include:
- in-home respite care;
- support workers to assist you when you are taking a break away from home; and
- residential respite care.
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Who will provide the CDRC package of services?The Centres will administer the budget for each respite package and also work with the carer to arrange and coordinate the provision of respite services. This will include:
- providing comprehensive information about the types and range of appropriate respites services available so the carer can make an informed decision about the services they would like to purchase;
- purchasing services as directed by the carer (and within the limits of the respite package budget);
- making payments from the respite package budget as authorised by the carer;
- providing the carer with a monthly account balance, listing yearly expenditure to date and funds remaining; and
- Where necessary, liaising with brokered service providers in partnership with the carer (for example, to assist the carer negotiate the provision of in-home respite at a time that suits them).
How can I access a CDRC package?The target groups for CDRC packages are carers of frail, older people (65 years or over, or 50 years and over for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people) and older people who are carers.
If you are interested in accessing a CDRC package, you can contact your local Commonwealth Respite and Carelink Centre on 1800 052 222 to find out if they have an allocation of CDRC packages and if you are eligible to receive a CDRC package. The Centre provides a single point of contact for information about locally available aged care services.
Centres will be responsible for selecting carers from their region and allocating CDRC packages on the basis of prospective carers’ relative needs and their suitability to participate.
If you are successful in accessing a CDRC package, the Centre will be responsible for undertaking an assessment of your particular needs and working with you to develop an agreed individual respite plan. The Centre will provide information about the services available in your local region to ensure that you have a clear understanding of the services you may be able to purchase using your individual budget.
How much will I have to pay to receive a CDRC package?Carers using Australian Government funded respite services are encouraged to contribute to the cost of respite care when they can afford to. While no carer should be refused services due to an inability to contribute to the costs of those services, it is important that those carers who can afford to pay all or some of the cost are required to do so.
What quality of service can I expect?Service providers that are funded by the Australian Government to provide respite services through the NRCP are required under the NRCP to meet The Common Standards. NRCP service providers are required to ensure that carers and the person/s they care for receive services of the highest quality. Recipients of a CDRC package are entitled to:
- quality services that meet their assessed needs;
- where possible, their preferred level of social independence;
- access information about all the service options available and the facts they need to make informed choices;
- access to details of the services being provided; and
- take part in developing a CDRC package of care that best meets their needs.
What if I have concerns?If you, the person/s you care for, your family or your representatives have concerns or uncertainties about the services you are receiving through your CDRC package, the following options are available:
- If you are concerned with the quality of the services you are receiving, you should discuss this with the service provider. If you are unable to resolve the issue with the service provider, the Centre can assist to facilitate resolution of the concern.
- If you are concerned with the administration services you are receiving from the Centre, you should raise your concern with the Centre. If you are unable to resolve the issue, the Department of Health and Ageing can assist to facilitate resolution of the complaint.
Evaluation of Consumer Directed CareCDRC places are currently funded until 30 June 2012. The future of any further CDRC funding and places is yet to be decided. Future Government policy decisions will take into account the evaluation of the Consumer Directed Respite Care initiative currently being undertaken by KPMG, on behalf of the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing, together with the Government's response to the Productivity Commission Report Caring for Older Australians.
Information on the evaluation is available at Consumer Directed Care Evaluation. Top of page
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