It’s time. Something has changed.
You might have a fall that gets you thinking, “I’m not as agile as I once was.” Or maybe simple things, like cleaning your home or climbing the stairs, aren’t as easy as they used to be.
The great news is that there is help available to make your life that little bit easier at home. That’s where the Home Care Package process might come in.
The process can take some time to understand, but don’t worry. As a trusted service provider for thousands of Australians, Feros Care is here to help.
You’ll find the full Home Care Package process and fees explained below. If you need more information, we’re available every step of the way to talk you through the best solution for you.
Just remember – the sooner you begin the process, the better!
Read below for more information or contact us anytime so that we can assist.
About Home Care Packages
A Home Care Package is government-provided, regular, long-term assistance to help you stay healthy, active, connected and living in your own home.
Think of it as a program that helps support your future needs, taking care of things before they become a much larger issue and may end up with you needing to go into residential care.
Three key things to know about Home Care Packages
- The packages are designed BY you and FOR you and include all kinds of service options – from showering to physiotherapy, help around the home and more. You are in the driver’s seat, enabling you to have your say in how and when your services are delivered.
- You will have to begin the process; it doesn’t automatically happen when you reach a certain age.
- You can apply on behalf of a loved one with their consent, should they need the assistance.
And don’t worry – all it takes is a phone call to begin the process.
One you are 65 years or older (or 50 years for Aboriginal Torres Strait Islanders), and no longer working, you may be eligible to receive government-funded assistance.
Call our Feros Care advisory team on 1300 090 256. This is a free service; we can guide you through the processes and even set up a three-way call with you, My Aged Care and Advisory team to get started.
Once you’ve registered your details with My Aged Care, they will provide you with an Aged Care ID number. This will be your reference any time you call back.
At this point, it is also a good idea to register someone you trust as your representative; this enables someone to speak on your behalf if necessary.
The face-to-face visit
My Aged Care will organise a Regional Assessment Service (RAS) assessor for a face-to-face visit. This assessor will ideally assess your needs and will refer you to the Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) if they feel you would be eligible for a Home Care Package.
An ACAT assess will then contact you to see if you are eligible for a Home Care Package. If so, they will arrange to come and visit you for a comprehensive home assessment.
Note: if your are eligible for a Home Care Package, the Regional Assessor will also send referrals on the day for you to access services via Commonwealth Health Support Program funding until a Home Care Package is released.
While you wait for the assessment appointment, you could organise a Home Care Package calculation of your cost of care income and means assessment.
This can be done by contacting Services Australia on 1800 227 475, online, or by post.
The income assessment will determine if any income tested fees need to be paid.
At the assessment, the assessor will speak to you about services that would best suit your needs.
Don’t downplay the seriousness of anything you may be experiencing; it will help you get the help you need!
Levels of Funding
If eligible for a Home Care Package, ACAT will write to you via a letter that advises your approved level of funding. There are four levels available.
- Level 1 supports people with basic care needs.
- Level 2 supports people with low care needs.
- Level 3 supports people with intermediate care needs.
- Level 4 supports people with high care needs.
Your will go into a national queue until a package is assigned to you. You can use this wait to find an approved service provider that best suits your needs – like us!
If you urgently need care during this time, you may be able to get help in the meantime via other funding. Chat with our experts to find out what may suit you best.
Once your package becomes available, you will receive a letter with a referral code. You have up to 56 days to enter into a service agreement with your chosen service provider.
If you are already with a provider for another service such as CHSP or STRC, you can still choose a different provider for your Home Care Package.
If you are having difficulty finding an approved home care provider in the 56 days, or need some extra time to decide, you can call My Aged Care on 1800 200 422 and they can extend the time by a further 28 days.
If you have chosen Feros Care, one of our Wellbeing Managers will meet with you to develop a care plan that helps you meet your goals and provides the services you need to remain independent at home.
Did you know?
- If you urgently need care throughout the process, your hospital or doctor will advise you on any short-term solutions available to get you through until your Home Care Package is approved.
- If you aren’t eligible for a Home Care Package, you may still be eligible for a different service. Click here to find out about more services.
- Our aged care experts are on hand to answer any questions you might have at any time; free call 1300 090 256 to get started.
The Home Care Package Process Explained
Watch this video for an in-depth explanation about Home Care Packages (HCP) and the process of receiving HCP funding.
Home Care Package Fees
There are a few key things to understand about Home Care Package fees:
- When you are approved for a Home Care Package, the Australian Government allocates funds for your individual home care package.
- The government has decided that everyone should contribute something to the cost of their care where they are able to – that’s why there are also some personal contributions and fees involved.
- The government subsidy, when combined with your personal contributions, is your HCP budget.
- The HCP budget sits in a Services Australia account in your name. It is not paid to you, it is paid to your provider after they have provided services to you.
Government Subsidy + Personal Contributions = Your HCP Budget
Let’s go into these fees and work out more about what exactly they are.
Concerned about fees?
Don’t be. Everyone who needs support will be able to access it. If you are experiencing financial hardship, this may be discussed with your Wellbeing Manager, and any associated fees or personal contributions may be reduced or waived if required.
The yearly contribution provided by the government depends on your level of Home Care Package.
For example, one visit per week from a support worker
For example, three visits per week
For example, five visits per week
For example, daily visits each week
Income Tested Fee
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.
Basic Daily 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!
It is not a mandatory fee and at Feros Care, your Wellbeing Manager will only mention it if they think you need more care than what is available to you via the subsidy. If this is the case, they will discuss this with you at your appointment.
In summary – if you want more care, it’s a good idea to pay the basic daily fee.
There are also some other fees to be taken into consideration, which come directly out of your package. This is because, as a service provider, the government expects us to operate out of your package – but rest assured that we’re very competitively priced.
Package Management: This is charged by your provider and contributes to ongoing administration and organisational activities.
Care management: This fee covers the coordination of your care via your Feros Care Wellbeing Manager, ensuring you get fully customised care management.
Did you know?
You can opt to self-manage your package rather than going with a service provider like us.
However, there are huge benefits to having our experts manage your budget. With so many services that might suit your lifestyle and individual circumstances, we can match you with the very best.
The Case Study
Let’s go through all of this with Voula, who has been approved for a Level 3 Home Care Package.
Want to find out more about your budget?
Or get started by calling our Feros Care advisory team on 1300 090 256
Not sure which Aged Care services or funding is right for you?
Feros Care’s Aged Care Guide offers easy to understand information on the range of Government subsidised care programs available for seniors.