Two senior female friends

Home Care vs. Aged Care (nursing homes) – How to choose the right support.

There will come a time for most people where they feel that they could use some support to better manage everyday life. This may be you, or someone you care about. Some like to stay at home using help from home care services, while others may take steps to move into residential care. These types of decisions are never easy and often involve difficult conversations.


There are many questions and considerations that go into making these big life decisions, so we’ve put together some useful information to help make the process feel a little less overwhelming.


Your preference matters


Research conducted by The Global Centre for Modern Ageing found that 8 in 10 people wanted to stay in their current home for as long as possible, and 3 in 4 people wanted to stay in their current home, even if help was required because of change in circumstances.   


Many prefer to stay within their communities where they retain access to the amenities and services they’re used to. However, sometimes In-Home Care is not sufficient for the level of support required.  


How much care or support is required?


Answering some fundamental questions will help you plan your next steps.



The amount of care required, and the person’s desired lifestyle will determine whether In-Home Care support or an Aged Care Home is a better fit.


You should also consider how much care you will need in the future. With in-home care, you can increase the amount of services as your needs change, including high levels of care. It’s even possible to remain at home with 24-hour care, 7 days a week if this is required. However, there are some services that can only be provided properly in residential care. You may need to consider moving into residential care at some point, if you require higher-level care than what is possible with In-Home Care and support.


What to expect from In-Home Care?


In-Home Care can range from basic services for one or two hours per week to give you help with identified tasks, up to full-time 24-hour care. The maximum you can expect to be funded by a Government Home Care Package is around 14 hours per week. This is the ideal solution for those who want to age in the comfort of their own home and is sufficient for most people’s needs if their services are well-managed.


Home care workers are organised by your Home Care Provider and deliver the all-important services that help you reach your independence goals. This can be achieved by providing companionship, or by providing care and assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs) including services for personal care, meal preparation, transport, medication, and general domestic tasks.


Skilled professionals such as nurses, occupational therapists and podiatrists can also provide basic services into the home for those with higher care needs. Allied Health professionals are also able to provide reablement services to help you regain independence or get back on your feet after a change in your health.


Many people choose In-Home Care over aged care homes because they can still enjoy the freedom and familiar surroundings of their own home while continuing to maintain their independence.


What to expect from Aged Care Homes?


Often referred to as nursing homes, residential Aged Care Homes can be the best option for those needing round-the-clock, high-level care. Most aged care homes offer semi-private and private rooms, with private rooms costing a bit more than those that are shared.


Care staff will assist residents with all ADLs, personal care needs, mobility issues, cleaning, laundry and provide medical care or therapy when needed.



This is why for many families who feel that full time care is needed, Aged Care Homes are often the clearest choice. Those with chronic health problems, severe mobility issues or who have had an extended time in hospital may also feel that an aged care home is a more appropriate choice.




Government funding and subsidies are available for both In-Home Care and residential Aged Care Homes. You can find more information on this on the My Aged Care website.


We have also provided some detailed information about In-Home Care government contributions on our website here.


Need help choosing what’s right for you?


Aunty Grace can help with information on any of the above and assisting you in making a choice for you and your family. Contact our friendly and supportive team today to discuss and they will be more than happy to answer all your questions.

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