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What are the different services available for older Australians living at home?

June 1, 20235 minute read
AAH Feb 23 High Care Needs_WEB

Many older Australians want to live in their home for as long as possible. Some stay because of the happy memories and proximity to family. Others want to live at home for ease of access to community amenities. Whatever the reason, elderly people can do so thanks to in-home services.

This care option is becoming increasingly popular nationwide, with the number of seniors in home care rising by 31 per cent between 2008-2018, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW). One of the primary reasons for this increase is due to the range of home care services available - let's look at the most common caregiving scenarios.

Home care options available in Greater Sydney and the Illawarra

General support

This home care service is focused on your wellbeing and taking the stress out of performing day-to-day household chores. As you get older it can become difficult to perform the same tasks like you used to. This is especially true of individuals who own a large home. The space that may have been perfect for your family as your children grew up might now seem too big to manage.

Personal care duties are performed by qualified and compassionate care professionals. Caregivers can help with the following tasks as examples: 

  • Driving, shopping, and getting you out and about
  • Showering, grooming and dressing
  • Meal planning and preparation
  • Household cleaning
  • Socialising and lifestyle guidance

Your home care professional isn't just restricted to a single type of task either - imagine them as another connection in your support network as you grow older. They are there to help you with vital responsibilities around the home. They are also there to lend a kind ear if you need it.

Respite care

If you require ongoing support while living at home, your own caregiver could use home care services to take a break. Here a care worker will cover the responsibilities of your regular carer for a specific period of time.

Nursing and palliative care

Nursing doesn't necessarily mean a trip to the hospital or health clinic. Home care services offer the chance for a medical professional to come to your home on a regular basis and help to manage ongoing health issues. This includes medication, post-operative care and care for specific injuries or illnesses. You can access these services on an infrequent or regular basis depending on your needs and budget.

In home services also extend to palliative and end of life care for those who want to remain in their home in comfort for as long as possible.

Dementia care

Dementia can be challenging for the person living with the condition as well as their carer, but it's important to know that dementia support is there for those who need it.

Sensitive nurses and care workers can come to your home to provide assistance with meal preparation, household tasks, medication management and a range of other tasks. Our care workers follow Anglicare’s 'Rhythm of Life' principles, which guide our staff to provide support and holistic care to meet the individual needs of each person, while encouraging independence.

The different cost packages and support

Once you've decided on the type of home care that suits you, securing a place in an in-home program is your next step. Here are a few of the support programs available:

Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP)

In 2017 more than 720,000 Australians aged 65 and over received in home care through the CHSP. This offers entry-level support for older people that includes planned respite periods, household assistance and personal care. You will need to undergo an assessment from the Regional Assessment Service (RAS) to determine your eligibility. The RAS team assess whether you:

  • Need assistance to complete everyday tasks
  • Have a diagnosed illness or dementia
  • Require short-term assistance to help restore your health

The CHSP is government subsidised to aid those aged 65 and over (50 years and over for Indigenous Australian and Torres Strait Island people). Support is available in special circumstances for those aged 50 and over (45 years old or more if they identify as Indigenous Australian or Torres Strait Islander) who have low income levels and are at risk of becoming homeless.

Currently, Anglicare has limited service availability under the CHSP.

Home Care Package Program

A Home Care Package offers the client flexibility and freedom to develop a care plan that suits their lifestyle and needs. Home Care Packages offer care services for everything from help with a weekly grocery shop to complex ongoing nursing or dementia care requirements. Accessing this program requires a comprehensive assessment with a member of the Aged Care Assessment Team, who will determine whether you are eligible for a package, and the extent of your care needs on a scale:

  • Level 1 - basic care
  • Level 2 - low level care
  • Level 3 - intermediate care
  • Level 4 - high care

Those who access Home Care Packages may be required to pay a Basic Daily Fee of 17.5 per cent daily fee of the single age pension basic rate (currently a maximum of $147.56 per fortnight according to the Department of Human Services). Anglicare does not charge home care package clients the Basic Daily Fee.

You will also be means tested by Centrelink to determine if you need to pay an income-tested care fee. The fee varies based on yearly income and those on a full pension are normally not required to pay it.

Why Anglicare at Home?

Anglicare's home care services are about enabling you to live independently and enjoy the things you love in comfort. We know that no two living situations are the same, which is why we tailor our services to your personal needs, affording you the dignity you deserve in a stress-free environment. Think home care services may be right for you? Have a no-pressure chat with our team today.

Anglicare acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the original and ongoing custodians of the lands and waters on which we live and work.

Inspired by the gospel of reconciliation in Jesus Christ, Anglicare's vision for reconciliation is a nation in which Australia's First Peoples are restored in dignity, respect, empowerment and opportunity.