What are Home Care Packages?
The Australian Government’s Home Care Packages Program helps you to live independently in your own home for as long as you can. The Program provides a subsidy towards a package of care, services and case management to meet your personal needs.
There are four levels of home care packages. A professional assessor will work with you to find out if a home care package is the right service for you, which level of service you need and when you might need it.
The four package levels are structured as follows:
- Level 1 supports people with basic care needs
- Level 2 supports people with low-level care needs
- Level 3 supports people with intermediate care needs
- Level 4 supports people with high-level care needs.
Each level of home care package provides a different subsidy amount. This amount is paid to an approved home care provider that you have selected. The subsidy contributes to the total cost of your service and care delivery. It is also expected that you will contribute to the cost of your care where your personal circumstances allow.
You can find out more on the subsidy rates at the Department of Health’s website www.agedcare.health.gov.au
What can home care package funds be used for?
The types of services that you can purchase under a home care package include but are not limited to:
- Personal services: assistance with personal activities such as bathing, showering, toileting, dressing and undressing, mobility and communication
- Nutrition, hydration, meal preparation and diet: assistance with preparing meals, including special diets for health, religious, cultural or other reasons, assistance with using eating utensils and assistance with feeding
- Continence management: assistance in using continence aids and appliances such as disposable pads and absorbent aids, commode chairs, bedpans and urinals, catheter and urinary drainage appliances, and enemas
- Mobility and dexterity: providing crutches, quadruped walkers, walking frames, walking sticks, mechanical devices for lifting, bed rails, slide sheets, sheepskins, tri-pillows, pressure-relieving mattresses and assistance using these aids
- Nursing, allied health and therapy services: for example, this may include speech therapy, podiatry, occupational or physiotherapy services and other clinical services such as hearing and vision services
- Transport and personal assistance: assistance with shopping, visiting health practitioners and attending social activities
- Management of skin integrity: assistance with bandages, dressings and skin emollients.
A home care package may also support the use of:
- Telehealth: video conferencing and digital technology (including remote monitoring) to increase access to timely and appropriate care
- Assistive technology: such as devices that assist mobility, communication and personal safety
- Aids and equipment: particularly those that assist a person to perform daily living tasks can be purchased using funds from your package budget. Your Home Care Agreement needs to specify whether it is leased or who owns the item and who is responsible for ongoing maintenance and repair costs.
Approved home care providers will work in partnership with you to tailor care and services to best support your needs and goals.