Home Care Package Reforms – What’s Changed?

Thursday 23 March, 2017

The Increasing Consumer Choice Home Care reforms package have commenced rolling out.

Below we take a look at what has and has not changed since February 27, 2017 (Department of Health).

What is changing?

1. Funding will follow the consumer
Home care package funding will follow the consumer, allowing them to choose and direct package funding to the provider that best meets their needs, and giving home care providers the opportunity to expand their businesses to meet local demand and consumer expectations. This replaces the current system where home care places are allocated directly to approved providers.

2. Access to home care packages
A consistent national system for prioritising access to home care will be established through a national prioritisation system managed by My Aged Care. The way consumers are prioritised will take account of their relative needs and circumstances and the time they have been waiting for care. This will allow for a more equitable and flexible distribution of packages, regardless of where consumers live.

3. Reduced red-tape for providers
The process for becoming an approved provider will be streamlined. Approved providers of residential care and flexible care will be able to ‘opt-in’ to providing home care rather than going through a full application process.

  • the Home Care Package funding will follow the consumer.
  • one national prioritisation system for people waiting for a Home Care Package (a national queue) supported by a National Package Inventory, which will identify all used and unused packages.
  • improvements to the process for organisations to become an Approved Provider.

What is not changing?

It is important to note that a number of things will not change:

  • Home care subsidy and supplements will continue to be paid to the Approved Provider, not directly to the consumer.
  • the number of Home Care Packages nationally available will still be capped.
  • there will be no changes to the current fee and income testing arrangements.

For more information on Home Care Packages, visit the Department of Health website or learn more about eCase Home Care software and how we can assist your organisation.

For assistance or advice on how Home Care changes will affect your organisation, contact the Health Metrics Advisory Team on 1300 810 119.

 

 

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