The dementia and cognition supplement in home care

Page last updated: 03 January 2017

Home care recipients with moderate to severe levels of cognitive impairment associated with dementia or other conditions may be eligible for the dementia and cognition supplement. The supplement rate is 10 per cent of the package funds the care recipient  receives. Current rates of the dementia and cognition supplement are on the schedule of subsidies and supplements.

The dementia and cognition supplement is included as part of an eligible care recipient’s individual budget.

Eligibility

Care recipients may be eligible for the supplement if they meet the following criteria:

The care recipient scores 10 or more on the Psychogeriatric Assessment Scales (PAS) using either the:

Cognitive Impairment Scale or

Cognitive Decline Scale – suitable if the care recipient is non-verbal, has reduced fine motor skills or is visually impaired.

Psychogeriatric Assessment Scale User Guide has information about how to do the assessment.

For care recipients from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds

The care recipient scores 22 or less using the Rowland Universal Dementia Assessment Scale (RUDAS).

For care recipients who are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people living in a rural or remote area

The care recipient scores 33 or less using the Kimberley Indigenous Cognitive Assessment (KICA-Cog).

For eligible veterans

If a veteran is eligible for both the veterans’ supplement and the dementia and cognition supplement in home care, the approved provider will only receive the veterans’ supplement.

Who can do the assessment?

The PAS and RUDAS assessments can be done by a:

  • registered nurse
  • clinical nurse consultant
  • nurse practitioner
  • clinical psychologist
  • medical practitioner.

The KICA-Cog assessment can be done by a health practitioner trained in its use. A list of trained practitioners is available through the Australian Health Practitioners Regulation Agency.

Applying for the supplement

Approved providers have responsibility for making sure the assessment of cognitive impairment is carried out and documented prior to claiming the dementia and cognition supplement.

The application form for the dementia and cognition supplement can be found on the Department of Human Services website.

The approved provider must email a scanned copy of the application to: aged.care.liaison@humanservices.gov.au

If a care recipient stops their package (for example, moves to another provider or dies) before a claim for the supplement is submitted to the Department of Human Services, the approved provider can still submit a claim for the period up to the date services stop, provided the eligibility requirements were met before to that date. The end date must be entered on the form to avoid overpayment.

Changing Home Care Package level or provider

A care recipient who has been assessed as eligible for the dementia and cognition supplement does not need to be reassessed if their package level or provider changes.

Background

The dementia and cognition supplement was introduced on 1 August 2013 to provide additional funding to acknowledge the extra costs of caring for people with cognitive impairment associated with dementia and other conditions. The supplement is available in all levels of the Home Care Packages Programme for people with moderate to severe levels of cognitive impairment associated with dementia or other conditions.

Multi-Purpose Services and National Aboriginal and the Torres Strait Islander Flexible Aged Care Programme receive an equivalent amount of the dementia and cognition supplement and veterans’ supplement as a component of their grant payments. Transition care services also receive an equivalent amount of the dementia and veterans’ supplement. 

A diagnosis of dementia alone cannot be used as evidence to support a claim for the supplement. The supplement is designed to provide additional funding for the care needs of people with moderate to severe levels of cognitive impairment related to dementia and other conditions. A person with a diagnosis of dementia may not be moderately or severely cognitively impaired. Care recipients with lower levels of cognitive impairment will not attract the supplement.

More information

More information and resources about dementia care and management of severe behavioural and psychological symptoms can be found on the department’s webpage on dementia.

For enquiries regarding the dementia and cognition supplement in home care, please email subsidiesandsupplements@health.gov.au.