Aged Care Package Changes: What Does This Mean for You?

Consumer Directed Aged Care (CDC) Changes Have Begun: What Does This Mean for You?

Starting from 27th February 2017, Consumer Directed Aged Care has changed with the introduction of Increasing Choice in Home Care measure.

Changes made by the Federal Government have altered how home aged care for older Australians are funded, with 80,000 home care packages going from provider-controlled to consumer-controlled.

A person who is eligible for a Home Care Package will now be able to choose which organisation will provide which services for them. Watch a video on how to choose an aged care provider here.

Previously, home care packages and funding were given to approved providers via an allocation process, and if the consumer wanted to change providers before they had used up all their package, then the remainder of the unused funds would be forfeited.

But now all home aged care packages will be given directly to individual consumers and they determine how services, such as domestic assistance, social support, nursing or personal care, are allotted (see a full list of home care services available here).

Consumers are now able to change their provider whenever they choose for whatever reason, for example if they move or if their care needs are unfulfilled, and take with them whatever remaining funds they have to the new provider.

This is a great opportunity to do a comparison of your current providers fees and available services and see how they compare, it’s just as you would have for your home loan or insurances over the years. You can download a printable aged care provider comparison tool to help you do this here.

This is a great change for home care as Consumer Directed Care not only ensures that the industry is consumer-driven, but that it is also market based and less regulated.

It is expected, now, that people who are receiving the home care packages will be more involved with the distribution of their funds and have more regular contact with their provider. At Southcare we will continue to have regular contact with our customers so we can take care of their needs and desires.

Consumer Directed Care is set to give more control to consumers over the funds for their care and how those funds are spent, which would be more efficient as the number of people who choose to use home care services rises. It has been estimated that the number of home care packages will increase to approximately 100,000 by 2018.

People who currently already have a home care package are not required to do anything to have the new changes applied to them, and their home care services will continue unless they choose otherwise.

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