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Your Home Care Package Guide

In this guide:

Published October 2023

What is a Home Care Package?

A Home Care Package (HCP) is funding provided to older Australians by the federal government.

The funding is designed for longer-term home-based support to aid older Australians to remain living independently in their home. Four levels of government funding are available, and an assessment of needs is required.

What are the different levels of Home Care Packages?

Home Care Packages are categorised into four different levels that correspond with the level of support the individual requires.

Level 1 – Supports basic-level care needs
Level 2 – Supports low-level care needs
Level 3 – Supports intermediate-level care needs
Level 4 – Supports high-level care needs

Each level includes a different amount of funding, and as an individual’s needs become greater, their Home Care Package may be increased to the next level.

Your home care package level will determine how much funding you have available for your care.

You can see the latest funding amounts by clicking here.

When your Home Care Package is approved:

When your Home Care Package has been approved, My Aged Care will send you a letter outlining which level you will receive. The reasons for the decision will be explained and you will receive a copy of the support plan that was discussed during your ACAT assessment.

Unfortunately, there can be a long waitlist for Home Care Packages, which means that even once you are approved, you may not receive any funding for three and twelve months. You can call My Aged Care on 1800 200 422 to find out  your expected wait time or log in to your MyGov client record.

Lower-level packages tend to have a shorter wait time and you may be able to apply for an interim package which is a Home Care Package of a lower level than the one for which you’ve been approved.

How do I choose a Home Care Package provider – shopping around for the best deal

Once you’ve been allocated a Home Care Package, it’s important to know that you have the freedom to choose not just the organisation that hosts it for you but also the organisation from where you access your support workers.

All Home Care Packages are consumer directed care (CDC) packages. Consumer-directed care is an empowering approach to aged care that gives consumers choice in designing their own support plan and choosing which services they receive, when and where they receive them and who delivers them.

That means you can choose your preferred individual or support services provider. You will need to check that whoever provides you with support services is suitably experienced and/or qualified, is adequately covered by insurance, and has a current police check and ABN.

When you have been allocated a package, you will need to choose an approved provider to administer the funds for you.

Your package must be ‘hosted’ by a government-approved HCP provider. Some providers charge lower fees to ‘administer’ your funds – with others offering tiered levels of case management, depending on how much support you need to organise your care.

How to self-manage your Home Care Package

As mentioned, a Home Care Package must have at least one care manager to administer the way your HCP funds are spent.

There are fully managed plans (managed by someone other than yourself) and self-managed plans (managed by you, or if you prefer, a family member you trust). Homemade provides the opportunity to self-manage your home care package providing you more control over your support and services.

Self-managing your Home Care Package puts you in control of your plan and gives you lots of choice. For instance, as a customer with HomeMade, you get to choose your support worker, the services you receive and when you receive them, and you also get to negotiate the hourly rate.

Ultimately, be well informed and make sure you only pay for what you need so your Home Care Package funding can cover more hours of support.

When you self-manage your HCP, you can also track your budget so you can always see how much you have to spend at any time. This can be done easily and simply via the HomeMade Platform.

HomeMade offers a full suite of tools within our platform. Your customer dashboard is where you can access documents relating to your care, see invoices for payment, search for service providers and submit reimbursements.

Accessing support before your Home Care Package comes through

Knowing there could be a long wait before your Home Care Package is allocated doesn’t mean you have to go without support.

You can access supports at any time by paying privately, that is, without being subsidised by your Home Care Package until it comes through.

Until your funding comes through, you can still access affordable support through platforms such as Mable and pay privately. It’s a solution that many find affordable and once your HCP becomes available, your money will go even further.

If you choose Mable to connect with independent support workers, you can simply continue with those relationships when your HCP is approved.

Search for independent support workers in your local area today on Mable.

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