Home Care Packages replaced the previous Community Aged Care Packages (CACP) and EACH packages and are now offered from Level 1 to Level 4 with a Level 4 Package attracting the highest level of Government subsidy for people who have the highest needs. There are significant changes in the way these packages are structured compared with the previous system.
The first point of contact for inquiries is the My Aged Care website on the ‘Help at Home” page. In order to access a Home Care Package, you will need to be assessed by an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) to see if you are eligible for a package. Aged Care Assessment Teams are generally based in hospitals. There is now a national waitlist for Packages and so there may well be a delay between being assessed for a Package and actually receiving services. Once you have been assessed for a Level 1, 2, 3 or 4 Home Care Package and have recived confirmation that you have been allocated a package, the next step is to identify a service provider. There is an on-line tool to help with the process. Historically, a package holder needed to identify a service provider who had a vacant package as previously, packages were linked to a specific service provider. From February 27th, 2017 package holders can choose any agency which is a preferred provider to host their package. Preferred Providers are generally agencies which currently provide Aged Care Services and there are many of them and so there is plenty of choice. Because of this change, ECHO is no longer restricted to Level 2 Packages and clients who have a Level 3 or Level 4 Package can choose ECHO to host their package.
The way Home Care Packages work is different to the Home and Community Care (HACC) Program. Further considerations for package holders include: