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Lady thinking about homecare package

You’ve been approved for a Home Care Package and have been advised you’re on the national waiting list.

What can you do during the wait time to prepare for your Home Care Package (HCP)?

Avenues for short-term support

Depending on the support you require, you may be eligible for help through the Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP) including interim services while you wait for your HCP.

GP and older lady going through questionnaire
CHSP provides an entry level of care, with services subsided by the government – meaning you will need to contribute a portion.

Consider using your CHSP codes from My Aged Care to undertake clinical assessments with a physiotherapist, social worker, or occupational therapist.

By engaging in these assessments early it allows you, and the provider you choose for your CHSP and HCP services, to gain a good picture of your needs.

From there you will receive individualised recommendations about services and products to improve your health, increase your safety, or get you back to doing the things you like to do.

These services and products can be funded under the CHSP or your HCP once it is assigned.

Also speak with your GP, as services may be available through your GP that can provide assistance while you wait for your HCP.

For example, under a Medicare chronic condition health care plan, those eligible can access five sessions of a particular allied health service such as podiatry, exercise physiology, or dietetics.

Older lady comparing bills and statements

Contact Centrelink

Call Centrelink to see what your client co-contribution may be.

You will need to provide this information and the letter from Centrelink to your home care provider. If this isn’t done, it can delay sign up, or you may be charged the full Income Tested Care Fee, which is over $30 a day.

Research providers

Once you are assigned a HCP, you have 56 days to find a provider, with capacity to extend this date only once by another 28 days.

If you haven’t signed with a provider by this date, you will go back onto the national queue. Therefore, while you are on the waiting list, it’s the perfect time to research potential providers.

Here are a few key points to consider when deciding on your provider…

Understand the provider’s costs and fees

Home care providers always publish their price list of all services and costs on the My Aged Care website.

Trusted workers

Check that staff are fully vetted and trained. Also consider your cultural needs, as you may prefer having someone that speaks your language and understands your cultural background to assist you with your daily tasks.

Flexible services

As your goals and needs change, ensure that your home care provider will work with you to review and alter your care plan.

Peace of mind

It is crucial to find a provider that offers 24/7 phone assistance.

Your feedback matters

When meeting with your care provider, find out how communications, feedback, and complaints are handled.

Older people socialising and having lunch

Take a holistic approach

Common services accessed via a HCP include help at home support such as housework, gardening, and personal care.

But you can use your package to create a holistic mix of care and services to support you to do the things you love and live life to the fullest.

This includes using your funding for social activities, allied health services, and advice on how to navigate the aged care system.

Need support with your at-home care? Contact ACH Group on 1300 44 22 77 to speak with our team.

Help is also available to navigate the My Aged Care application process.

About ACH