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What support services are available to the elderly at home?

 

Are you finding some everyday tasks harder than you used to? Or do you have a loved one that could use a little help around the home? The good news is that there are many support services available and you can choose to have these complement or replace informal care from family and friends. Furthermore, these services are often free or subsidised by the government while additional paid services can also be obtained through care services providers.

 

Support services are designed to keep older Australians living safe and independently at home and to better the quality of life for both you and your loved ones. They include government-funded and community programs, as well as additional support for low-income households.

 

We have listed some of the most common forms of assistance available, these include:

 

  • In Home Care
  • Meals on Wheels
  • Personal Safety Alarms
  • Community Visitors Scheme
  • Carer Gateway
  • Continence Assistance
  • Dementia Support
  • Respite

 

We have provided some information on each of these supports below, so that you can assess what might be suitable for your needs. Most forms of government assistance require an assessment. Aunty Grace can help step you through the application process and can even complete some steps on your behalf. Please contact our friendly and knowledgeable team and we can help you navigate your journey to receiving support and care services.

 

In Home Care Services

 

There are two types of government funding currently being provided, these are the:

 

  • Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP) – for basic support services; and
  • Home Care Packages (HCP) – for more comprehensive support

 

 

Commonwealth Home Support Programme

 

This programme provides basic support services such as housekeeping and grocery shopping to maintain your independence.

 

Eligibility for this program is based on your support needs and age. To be eligible for this program, you must be aged:

 

  • 65 years or older (50 years or older for Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people), or
  • 50 years or older (45 years or older for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people) and on a low income, homeless, or at risk of being homeless.

 

 

Home Care Packages

 

Home Care Packages are designed for those with care needs that go beyond what the CHSP funding can provide. Eligibility for this funding has the same age requirements as CHSP and is based on a needs basis.

 

Depending on your situation, you may be eligible for a Home Care Package ranging from levels 1-4. The difference between the levels is based on the amount of support you require to meet your needs and the amount of government contributions provided to deliver these support services.

 

Level 1 - Basic care needs

A little extra support, such as help with cleaning the house, your health and wellbeing, meal preparation, shopping, and getting around.

Approximate yearly government contribution: $9,000

 

Level 2 - Low care needs

Assistance you with daily tasks like cleaning and personal care, as well as professional medical support

Approximate yearly government contribution: $15,750

 

Level 3 - Intermediate care needs

Assistance in your day-to-day tasks, and by a highly trained clinical team to support all your medical needs.

Approximate yearly government contribution: $34,500

 

Level 4 - High care needs

Support with your high level and complex nursing care needs 

Approximate yearly government contribution: $52,250

 

The home care package itself is managed and coordinated with a local home care provider. Navigating these services can be overwhelming, particularly if you or your loved one needs timely care. Aunty Grace is a government approved provider of Home Care Packages. We can help you to understand your options and assist you with your application right through to your first service and beyond! We can also assist you with privately funded services while you wait for your funding to come through.

 

Many of these services below can often be eligible for subsidies under a home package. Call us for more information.

 

Meals on Wheels

 

Australia’s Meals on Wheels program provides delicious and nutritious meals, delivered to your home by friendly volunteers for approximately $7-$10 per meal. This pricing structure may be subsidised, or an alternative rate offered, depending on whether you or your loved one are on a pension.

 

Meals can be provided for a short-term period or on an on-going basis depending on your needs. In addition to delivering meals, Meals on Wheels volunteers also monitor the health and wellbeing of their clients and in doing so provide added peace of mind for family members.

 

To access Meals on Wheels, find your local service provider and enquire about availability for your area. 

 

 

Personal Safety

 

Personal safety alarms can be particularly valuable for older Australians, these devices provide a way for family members, friends, and emergency support services to be quickly notified if you or your loved one needs urgent support. MePACS is the service provider of these alarms for this service.

 

You can apply for a government funded program such as Personal Alert Victoria (PAV) or use personal alert alternatives such as a personal alarm service, a community volunteer-run “check-in” program, or a service that phones at regular intervals to check on your loved one.

 

Community Visitors Scheme

 

The Community Visitors Scheme (CVS) arranges volunteer visits to provide friendship and companionship to older people.

 

Visits are available to anyone receiving government-subsidised residential aged care or Home Care Packages who is at risk of isolation or loneliness.

 

To access the Community Visitors Scheme, simply contact Aunty Grace or your loved one’s aged care home and ask if they are eligible to receive a visit from a volunteer visitor.

 

Carer Gateway

Thee Carer Gateway is designed to support the family members and caregivers of older Australians. The Carer Gateway:

 

  • Provides easy to understand information and advice
  • Assists carers to get services and support
  • Provides free counselling services over the phone
  • Provides free self-guided coaching to help you in your role as a carer
  • Let’s you connect with other carers through a community forum

 

Continence Assistance

The Continence Aids Payment Scheme (CAPS) is an Australian Government payment providing assistance to people with permanent and severe incontinence. It is a direct payment administered by Medicare for those who need continence products long term.

 

Dementia Support

 

Dementia Australia is a national program with specialised support programs, services and education for people living with dementia, their family carers and family members, as well as the general public. They represent the 472,000 Australians living with dementia and the almost 1.6 million Australians involved in their care.

 

Dementia Australia has many free and readily available resources for you and your loved ones to access via their website at Dementia.org.au.

 

Dementia Australia has an advice and support helpline and offers counselling to you and your loved one living with dementia. You can call the Dementia Helpline during business hours on 1800 100 500 or email them at helpline.nat@dementia.org.au to speak to one of their trained staff members, confidentially.

 

Aunty Grace also offers in-home dementia care and support for people who want to continue living safely and independently in their own homes.

 

Respite Care

The mental and physical wellbeing of those looking after their loved ones is critical to both the carer and their loved one.  Respite care gives primary caregivers some time out to attend to their own wellbeing and life’s commitments, knowing that their loved ones are safe and well cared for.

 

Respite care can be delivered in home to your loved one by providers such as Aunty Grace. You can also get respite care outside of a Home Care Package as a private paying client.

 

Need help?

 

Aunty Grace is here to help you connect to the service options available. Our approach to care is all about maintaining your health and independence, and to help you live well in your own home.

 

Contact our friendly and supportive team today to discuss any of the services above or if you have any questions about how Aunty Grace can best provide you with care and support.

Not sure where to start? Need Assistance? Get in touch with us now.

Not sure where to start?

Need Assistance?

Get in touch with us now.

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