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Everything You Need to Know About Home Care Packages in Australia

As people grow old, it is harder for them to let go of what they are attached to and familiar with. Many elderly preferred to stay at home rather than going to an aged care facility. The government can’t force someone who doesn’t want to go, so they created a program that allows older people to stay at home and live independently and safely.  

A Home Care Package is a government-funded program that allows the elderly to stay at home as long as they want by giving them options and freedom to choose what kind of support and care they need. There are four packages available, ranging from Level 1 to 4. Home Care Packages are given or assigned based on the individual’s needs and living situation.  

The government will not give the allocated budget for the Home Care Package to the individual in cash; instead, they will send the money to the approved service provider with whom they will cooperate to determine what to do with the money. To know more about the Home Care Package program, here are the things that you should know about.  

Eligibility 

To know if you are an eligible recipient of the Home Care Package, you must be properly assessed and approved by the Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT). The assessment team is composed of multidisciplinary teams of medical and allied health experts.  

They examine the physical, medical, cultural, social, and even mental needs of the individual. These teams also help assess and determine the exact and appropriate level of support that they need. Anyone who needs complex care and support is eligible to apply. You can apply for yourself or ask for help from your guardian or family member if you have some trouble. 

Package Levels 

As mentioned above, a Home Care Package has four levels; each has a certain level of funding. After the assessment, the service provider you’ve chosen gets paid to arrange care services to match your needs depending on the degree of care and support you are evaluated for. The packages cater to a wide range of conditions, from the most simple to the most complex.   

With home care packages you can have four levels to choose from, depending on the needs of your family member: 

Level 1 – This home package is the very basic of the 4 levels. With HCP 1 or Home Care Package 1, it typically involves one to two home visits from a highly-trained care worker. The package involves a bit of cleaning around the house, along with personal health care. Help with basic tasks such as dressing up, eating, transport, and even shopping are included. 

Level 2 – Level 2 has all the services mentioned above included. Only this time, the care worker visits the client 3-4 times a week. 

Level 3 – This HCP is  designed to provide extra help for senior citizens who need support while living at home. A nurse or a care worker is expected to visit your loved ones on a daily basis. Along with the basic services, additional services that are included in this HCP are podiatry services, massage, and vital signs monitoring.  

Level 4 – HCP 4 is geared towards clients who have more complex healthcare needs. For instance, in the level 4 home care packages in melbourne, both a nurse and care worker will do daily visits. They will also work with doctors and other healthcare professionals to better meet the needs of your loved ones.   

Expiry 

Like any services or program offered, a Home Care Package also has an expiry, but it doesn’t mean that you are not eligible to apply anymore. Applying for a package is quite a task, and the waitlist line is long, and it could take months before you are assessed and picked.  

If you’ve been granted a Home Care Package, it indicates the government has decided to support you. You have 56 days to select a care provider, or your Package will be forfeited. If you lose your Package, you will be placed on a national waiting list and may have to wait 12-18 months for your Package to be financed again. So make sure you put it to good use – or you’ll lose it! 

Switching Care Providers 

You now have the option of changing your care package provider. The money from the Home Care Package is allocated towards you, not the provider. With this being said, if you are not satisfied for any reason, you have the option of selecting a different care provider to perform your services. People change care providers for various reasons, including overpaying for their Package, not obtaining services as promised, and paying high hourly costs. 

There is no particular reason to limit yourself when you think you deserve better. Changing your package provider might be a hassle for you, but your needs are more important. 

Personal Care 

In your package, there are a lot of things that you can ask and add. You can seek assistance with personal care and hygiene if your motor skills are deteriorating. Showering and personal grooming assistance may be included in your package. You can also obtain assistance with dining, such as meal preparation, and help when eating using utensils and other things.    

Full-time live-in care, which provides all of the benefits of residential care in the comfort of your own home, can also be included if you require intensive, ongoing maintenance that your family is unable to offer. 

There are also personalized care packages that are tailored to fit the needs of your loved ones. For example, if they have disabilities, then careful ambulatory exercises and routines can be included in the care packages.  

Takeaway 

Applying for a home care package may take some time and needs a lot of effort before getting accepted. So it is essential to find a decent and trusted home care provider that can provide your needs and respect your values.   

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