Information for the Aged Care Sector Issue 2020/09

In this issue: Have your say - CARE-IT Research Project, Financial assistance to help care recipients meet aged care costs, Aged Care Provider Portal Update, Extension: Business Improvement Fund for residential aged care and Future of SACS funding under the CHSP.

Date published:
Health sector

Have your say - CARE-IT Research Project

Aged care providers are encouraged to participate in the Aged Care Industry Information Technology Council (ACIITC) Capabilities in Aged & Community Care Readiness: An Evaluation of Innovation & Technology (CARE IT) Research Project.

The CARE-IT Research Project provides an important opportunity for aged care industry stakeholders to be involved in a landmark study. The project will identify technology and innovation benchmarking for the sector and contribute to the development of strategy and investment for the future.

Participation involves completing the ACIITC CARE-IT Survey 2020. The survey is estimated to take 30 to 40 minutes. Participants can register to go in the draw to win two conference passes to ITAC 2021. Please limit your response to one per organisation.

The survey is available now until 5:00 pm AEST on Friday, 5 June 2020.

Financial assistance to help care recipients meet aged care costs

The following assistance is available to aged care recipients who are having difficulty paying their fees.

  • Care recipients who have experienced a reduction in income and/or assets should contact Services Australia on 1800 227 475 to request an ad hoc review of their aged care fees noting that a change in circumstances does not necessarily result in a change in fees.
  • Care recipients who have paid a partial lump sum deposit can have any remaining daily payments drawn from their lump sum balance to meet their accommodation costs and can request that other fees also be drawn down.
  • Care recipients can receive assistance in understanding their aged care costs and options by contacting Services Australia’s free Financial Information Service (FIS). To make an appointment, phone 132 300 and say “Financial Information Service” when prompted.
  • Care recipients may be able to access the Pension Loans Scheme (PLS). The PLS is a voluntary reverse mortgage through Services Australia that offers older Australians a fortnightly income stream to supplement their retirement income. Care recipients can contact FIS for assistance.
  • Care recipients who are not able to pay their fees may be eligible for financial hardship assistance. Further information is available on the My Aged Care website.

Aged Care Provider Portal Update 

On 2 May 2020, Services Australia made a number of upgrades and enhancements to the new Aged Care Provider Portal (ACPP) including:

  • The ability to track a care recipient’s history across different services by viewing up to three types of care recipient IDs on the care recipient profile. This includes each care recipient's My Aged Care ID number.
  • The ability to click into care recipient profiles from the current claim and come back to the exact place on the claim screen.
  • Updates to payment statements layout to more clearly identify adjustments.

Learn more about using the portal

Extension: Business Improvement Fund for residential aged care

Grant opportunities for the Business Improvement Fund for residential aged care have been extended to 30 April 2021.

Providers can apply for grant assistance to improve business operations, or support sale of facility to another provider, or closure where no other options are available.

The Business Improvement Fund is designed to support small to medium sized providers:

  • with limited access to other financial support
  • facing significant financial pressures which may impact on care to residents or risk service closure.

How to apply

Applications must be submitted via GrantConnect by 2:00pm AEST on 30 April 2021.

For more information, and to submit your application form, visit the GrantConnect website.

Future of SACS funding under the CHSP

The Social and Community Services (SACS) supplement is scheduled to cease on 30 June 2021. The SACS supplement helped cover the cost of essential home support care staff and its cessation will result in a shortfall of funding for some CHSP providers.

To assist these CHSP providers, the department has agreed to increase the ongoing base funding of all SACS-eligible CHSP providers in 2021-22. The cost to cover the shortfall will be approximately $50 million per annum.

The department will decide how to allocate the funds over the coming months. Payments will be made in financial year 2021-22.

Only CHSP providers who are currently eligible for the SACS supplement will be eligible for this funding. 


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