The Home Care Package cheat-sheet: Fees and processes explained
You, or a loved one, are ready for more help at home, and you want to begin looking into a Home Care Package.
The process can take some time to understand, and so it’s best to start sooner rather than later. We’ve got all the information you need below.
What is a Home Care Package?
A Home Care Package is government-provided, regular, long-term assistance to help you stay healthy, active, connected and living in your own home.
The packages can include all kinds of services – from lawn mowing to cleaning, personal care, nursing and so much more.
Where do I begin?
Here’s a step-by-step guide to the process.
1. You can begin by calling the Feros Care advisory team on 1300 763 583. Our aged care experts will connect you directly to the government’s My Aged Care to get started.
2. Register your details with My Aged Care. If you are eligible, they will organise an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) assessor to come and visit you for a home assessment.
3. While you wait for the assessment, you’ll need to organise an income and means assessment by contacting Services Australia. This will determine what fees you may have to pay, if any.
4. Once you have your assessment, you’ll wait for a letter in the post advising of your eligibility for a Home Care Package. There are four levels available:
Level 1: Basic care needs
Level 2: Low-level care needs
Level 3: Intermediate care needs
Level 4: High-level care needs
5. Once you’ve accepted the package, you will go into a national queue until a package is available. This can take up to 12 months. You can use that time to find an approved service provider that best suits your needs – like us!
6. When your package becomes available, you have up to 56 days to enter into a service agreement with your chosen service provider.
7. If you have chosen Feros Care, one of our Wellbeing Managers will meet with you to develop a care plan that helps you get the most bang for your buck.
What about the funds?
When you are approved for a Home Care Package, the Australian Government allocates funds for your individual home care package.
Their yearly contribution depends on your level of Home Care.
The government encourages everyone to contribute something to the cost of their care where they can – that’s why there are also some personal contributions and fees involved, such as the Basic Daily Care Fee.
So the subsidy, when combined with these personal contributions, is your HCP budget.
Government Subsidy + Personal Contributions = Your HCP budget
What is the Basic Daily Care Fee?
The basic daily fee is added to the government subsidy to increase the funds available to you in your Home Care Package budget – offering you more support!
At Feros Care, this is not a mandatory fee. Your Feros Care Wellbeing Manager will only mention it if they think you need more care than what is available to you.
What is an Income Tested Fee?
The income tested fee is an additional fee that some people may pay if their income is over the maximum income for a full pensioner.
This fee is different for everyone and assessed on several things, including your pension, savings accounts and any income streams such as investments and rental properties.
This fee comes directly out of your bank account and is not negotiable. It also does not provide any extra to the government subsidy and does not impact your budget of what you can use for services.
Concerned about fees?
Don’t be. Everyone who needs support will be able to access it. If you are experiencing financial hardship, fees can be reduced.