Updates to home care packages in Australia came into effect at the beginning of 2023. Find out what has changed and if the changes will affect you.
As Australia’s population ages, the systems that support the elderly are evolving. Most changes have the goal of improving the level of support and affordability for home and residential care.
This year, a change that came into effect in January impacts Home Care Packages and the way people are charged for their at-home care.
Home Care in 2023
As of January 1st, there is a cap on the amount Australian home care providers can charge for home care and package management.
To explain, home care is when someone visits a senior at home to help with health-related and household tasks. This is paid for by a Home Care Package, which is a set amount of funds.
When an individual is allocated a Home Care Package, they are likely to need help managing it. Providers can usually offer support in this area, with what is referred to as ‘package management’.
A package management service may include:
- Help with budgeting for services
- Arranging carer schedules
- Managing invoices and monthly statements.
Maximum prices are now set at $70.42 per fortnight for home care and $52.78 per fortnight for package management for someone with Level 1 care requirements. Someone with Level 4 care requirements should not pay more than $408.66 per fortnight for home care and $306.46 per fortnight for package care. You will find the caps for Level 2 and Level 3 care here.
In 2023, home care providers can no longer charge:
- Exit charges
- Separate charges for brokerage or subcontracting of third-party goods or services.
This means that the price your provider charges must be all-inclusive and agreed with you before services commence or the good is purchased.
- Package management fees if you only receive care management (after the first month)
- Package management fees when you ask to take leave from your package, such as when you access respite care or go to hospital. When you take leave, your provider cannot charge for any services, including care and package management.
As shared on health.gov.au, the Australian Government is committed to reducing excessive administration and management charges in the HCP Program. The 2023 updates will ensure more funds are available to meet the needs of care recipients rather than covering the cost of paper and office work.
Receive outstanding home care from KOPWA
KOPWA stands for ‘Keeping Older People Well At home’. Since 1957, our mission has been to ensure seniors are comfortable and cared for.
As a not-for-profit organisation, we are able to maintain competitive pricing so our clients receive better value from their Home Care Package. We already charge less than the caps for care and package management so it is unlikely that the cost of your care will change as a result of this initiative.
Want to know more about home care on Sydney’s north shore? Contact us today on 02 9412 0284.