Living Longer. Living Better.
Staying at Home
Commonwealth Home Support program ($75.3 million)Older Australians clearly want to remain in their own homes for as long as possible as their care needs increase. While there are many programs that provide a range of support services in the home, these programs are often fragmented and inconsistent, leaving older people and their families confused and not always being treated fairly as their needs change.
From 1 July 2015, the Government will establish a national Commonwealth Home Support Program. This new and streamlined approach will bring together under the one program all the services currently providing basic home support - the existing Home and Community Care program for older people, the National Respite for Carers Program, the Day Therapy Centres program and the Assistance with Care and Housing for the Aged program.
In developing the Commonwealth Home Support program, we will review services being delivered in the home to gain a better understanding of what older Australians want and need. Services including meals on wheels, transport and home modifications and maintenance will be looked at to ensure they are being delivered in the best possible way. The review which will be worked through in consultation with providers and consumers will inform a move to more consistent and equitable service delivery arrangements, and more national consistency in what people contribute to the cost of these services. This will be the first national review of basic home support services since the 1980’s.
More Home Care packages ($880.1 million)There is currently substantial unmet demand for Home Care packages. Almost one in three people have to wait more than three months for that level of care.
The Gillard Government is tackling this situation. Over the next five years, the number of operational Home Care packages will increase by nearly 40,000 to almost 100,000. This will mean less waiting time for people.
The delivery of Home Care packages is fragmented. People have to move between providers as their care needs increase.
From 1 July 2013, two new packages will cater better for the care mix. The number of Home Care package levels will increase from two to four, to allow a seamless continuum of care at home.
Over time we will develop and introduce a comprehensive Aged Care Funding Instrument for both residential care and Home Care packages. Care recipients would be able to stay with the same provider as their care needs increased, with additional funding flowing to the provider as determined by the new comprehensive Aged Care Funding Instrument.
Greater choice and control in Home CareConsumer Directed Care is an initiative placing the individual at the centre of care decisions, fully engaging them in determining what and how their care needs are provided. The Government has been trialling Consumer Directed Care in a limited number of Home Care packages for the last two years. From 1 July 2013, all new Home Care packages allocated to providers will need to be offered to care recipients on a Consumer Directed Care basis, with existing packages to be converted by July 2015.
Fairer means testing arrangements for Home Care packages (-$183.0 million)Fees paid for Home Care packages are not currently consistently applied, unlike in residential care. A new means tested care fee will be introduced for some care recipients on top of the existing basic fee. No full pensioner will pay a care fee under the new arrangements. Some part pensioners and non pensioners will pay higher total fees than are currently charged. People receiving a care package on 30 June 2014 will continue under their current fee arrangement.
The Government will require some care recipients to contribute more to the cost of their care through an income tested care fee, with safeguards for those who cannot afford to contribute. No full pensioner will pay a care fee.
No care recipient will be asked to contribute more than the cost of their care and no care recipient’s home or other assets will be included in assessing their ability to pay. In addition, an annual cap of $5,000 for part pensioners and $10,000 for self-funded retirees will be in place for the care fee.
There will be a lifetime cap of $60,000 on care fees, so that no person will pay more than this amount for Home Care packages or residential care during their lifetime.
Home care packages, 2011-12 to 2021-22
Text from image shown above
|Home Care Packages, 2011-2012 to 2021-22|
|Additional Home care package place from More Aged Care Places measure|