The Aged Care Funding Instrument (ACFI)

Residential aged care providers use the Aged Care Funding Instrument (ACFI) to claim residential care subsidy for each resident that permanently enters their care.

About the ACFI

The Australian Government subsidises a large proportion of the costs of running approved residential aged care facilities.

ACFI was the funding model used for residential aged care up to 30 September 2022. The amount of subsidy paid is based on your assessments of the residents’ ongoing care needs. Current ACFI rates are in the schedule of subsidies and supplements.

Submitting appraisals during the transition period

You will be paid ACFI funding for care provided up to 30 September 2022. From 1 October 2022 AN-ACC funding will be paid.

You will need to submit an ACFI appraisal to get paid ACFI funding for all new admissions for the period up until 30 September.

The ACFI business rules have not changed during the transition from ACFI to AN-ACC. You will be able to submit your ACFI appraisals after 30 September 2022.

Example case 1

A new client enters permanent care on 18 September 2022, the ACFI appraisal is due by 18 November 2022. The ACFI appraisal will need to be undertaken and submitted into the Services Australian Provider Portal by the due date of 18 November 2022 for the provider to be paid ACFI funding up until 30 September 2022. AN-ACC funding will be paid from 1 October 2022.

All mandatory ACFI appraisals and reappraisals with an expiry date up until 30 September 2022 will need to be undertaken by providers to get paid ACFI funding for the period up until 30 September 2022. This is even if the appraisal is submitted after 1 October 2022. This is in accordance with the ACFI business rules where appraisals and reappraisals can be submitted in the period one month before or one month after the expiry of an existing ACFI classification. Exceptions to this rule are in Division 27 of the Aged Care Act 1997.

Example case 2

If an ACFI mandatory appraisal expires on 25 September 2022, the ACFI appraisal or reappraisal submission deadline is 25 October 2022. The ACFI mandatory appraisal or reappraisal will need to be undertaken and submitted into the Services Australian Provider Portal by the due date of 25 October 2022 for you to be paid ACFI funding up until 30 September 2022.  From 1 October 2022 AN-ACC funding will be paid.

Any new permanent admissions to residential care from 1 October 2022 and thereafter, be that from home or a hospital, will be assessed by an AN-ACC Assessor and AN-ACC funding provided from the date of admission.

How to use the ACFI

You can make an ACFI claim for care provided up to 30 September 2022 by completing the ACFI application for classification form. There are 2 ways you can submit the form to Services Australia:

The information you include in the form is based on information from the ACFI answer appraisal and assessment packs.

For further information about the ACFI questions, you can also watch the ACFI guide for providers of aged care video.

ACFI submissions rules

You submit the ACFI Application for Classification form to Services Australia to residents that entered into care before 1 October 2022. ACFI subsidy payments are then paid through Services Australia.

For residents that entered into care before 1 October 2022, you must conduct an ACFI appraisal:

  • at least 7 days after the resident enters your care
  • before the resident has been with you for 2 months.

You can only submit the application for classification to Services Australia after 28 days of the resident being in your care.

Penalties apply for late appraisals. If you submit your appraisal:

  • within 2 to 3 months after the appraisal end date – your subsidy will be reduced by $25 each day until Services Australia gets the form
  • more than 3 months after the appraisal end date – you will not receive a subsidy until after Services Australia gets the application for classification form.

ACFI appraisal and reappraisal rule

You must provide a resident with 7 continuous days of care before starting an ACFI appraisal.

If a resident received respite care before entering permanent care, the 7-day period may include the days in respite (if there’s no break in service). However, you must start the appraisal when the resident enters care permanently.

You must conduct an ACFI reappraisal when:

  • the classification expires
  • we request in writing that a care recipient be reappraised.

A resident’s needs can also be appraised:

  • after the first 12 months from the date the resident’s classification took effect
  • any time when a resident is classified at the lowest level
  • within 2 months of a resident transferring, and the new provider does not agree with their classification
  • when a resident has had a significant change in care needs
  • when a resident has incorrectly been classified at the lowest level.

A reappraisal is usually conducted 1 month before the existing classification expires, running until 1 month after it expires. Exceptions to this rule are in Division 27 of the Aged Care Act 1997.

Services Australia has further information on when to appraise or reappraise a care recipient.

ACFI reviews and reconsiderations

While we are not planning to continue a broad rolling program of ACFI reviews after 30 September 2022, we may check ACFI claims and records of treatment after 1 October 2022 if they relate to ACFI claims for subsidy paid up until 30 September 2022.

If you do not agree with our ACFI review decisions, you can seek a reconsideration.

Management of reviews and reconsiderations is through the My Aged Care Provider Portal.

Organisations must be registered to access the Provider Portal.

Read more about accessing and setting up the My Aged Care Provider Portal.

Supporting legislation

The ACFI was designed to link to the requirements under the Quality of Care Principles 2014.

The ACFI questions are indicators only. The amount of funding provided is for delivering all legislated care and services under the:

Chapter 2 in the Aged Care (Subsidy, Fees and Payments) Determination 2014 sets out the basic subsidy amount, including ACFI rates.

Ongoing provider responsibilities

You need to continue to meet their responsibilities under The Aged Care Act 1997, including:

You need to retain ACFI appraisal evidence requirements to support ACFI claims as set out under Division 88 of The Aged Care Act 1997 and consistent with section 7 of the Records Principles 2014, for care provided up until 30 September 2022. Division 88-1 (1) b states that the record must be retained for the period ending 3 years after the 30 June of the year in which the record was made.


Aged Care Funding Instrument (ACFI) Resources

These resources are to assist approved aged care providers to complete assessments for the ACFI. Included in this collection are the user guide, fact sheet, and the assessment and answer appraisal packs.


Contact Services Australia:

  • to follow-up on ACFI claims
  • for information and questions on subsidy payments.

For general policy and program enquiries, or complaints about ACFI, contact our ACFI team.

Email our reconsiderations team to find out about ACFI reconsiderations.

Contact the subsidies and supplements team for general enquiries about aged care provider payments.

For other enquiries, see all aged care contacts.

Date last updated:

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