Aged Care System Undergoes Reform

Posted on 05/07/2014 by ACV Staff. No comments so far.

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Aged Care System Undergoes Reform

The Federal Government has introduced a series of aged care reforms to prepare for increasing aged care needs in Australia.

Although most people wait until bad health to plan for aged care, Assistant Minister for Social Services, Mitch Fifield said consumers should seek information early and learn about the choices available to ensure they made the right decision.

About 3.5 million Australians will require some kind of health care by 2050.

The Government said the changes, which came into effect on 1 July, would make the system sustainable and give consumers more control over the decisions they made about aged care facilities and home care services.

Reforms include:

* The ability to pay for accommodation and services through refundable accommodation deposit, daily accommodation payment, or a combination of both; and 28 days to make a decision about payment methods.

* All residential aged care providers required to publish maximum amounts charged for accommodation and extra services.

* Changes to means testing in residential care and home care to determine a person’s fair contribution, if any, to care and accommodation based on their assets and income.

* New capping arrangements set at $25,000 annually for means tested fees in residential care; $5000 for those on a part-pension in home care; $10,000 a year for self-funded retirees in home care; and a $60,000 lifetime cap on means tested care fees for home and residential care.

* More home care packages for the elderly to stay in their own home independently.

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