Home Care Package Delegate Decisions from 27 February 2017
The Australian Government is improving the way home care is delivered to older Australians. From 27 February 2017 home care packages will change in three main areas: allowing funding to follow the consumer; establishing a new national process for prioritising access to home care; and reducing red tape to become an Approved Provider of aged care.
Consumer eligibility will continue to be determined by an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) through a comprehensive assessment using the unchanged National Screening and Assessment Form (NSAF).
As outlined in the ACAT short course, or Statement of Attainment 3, from 27 February 2017, assessors will need to assess and approve eligible home care clients at a specific package level (i.e. home care level 1, 2, 3 or 4). A guidance framework and user guide has been developed to support assessors in determining a specific package level.
Transition arrangements are in place for clients who already hold a broad-banded level approval. From 27 February 2017, clients with a broad-band approval will automatically be deemed approved for the higher package level within their broadband. For example, a client with an existing approval for a level 1/2 will be deemed to be approved for a level 2 and a client with an existing approval for level 3/4 will be deemed approved for a level 4. These changes will be made within the My Aged Care system; assessors and delegates won’t need to do anything for clients with prior approvals.
Clients will be able to access a home care package at a lower level than their approval as an interim arrangement and will be able to indicate a minimum level that they would accept.
Priority for Home Care Service
From 27 February 2017 assessors will need to recommend a client’s priority for home care services to the delegate for approval. A client’s priority for home care services indicates a client’s risk in the absence of timely services based on the comprehensive assessment and the assessor’s clinical judgment. A guidance document has been developed to support assessors in determining the priority for home care services.
A change to a client’s priority for home care service will require approval by an ACAT delegate.
A new assessment will be required if a client’s home care level or priority for home care services needs changing. This is because they are both delegate decisions, subject to review. The guidance document on priority for home care services provides further information on reassessment.
Key points to remember
- Consumer eligibility for home care will continue to be determined by an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) through a comprehensive assessment.
- The NSAF is not changing.
- From 27 February 2017, assessors will need to assess and approve eligible home care clients at a specific package level (i.e. home care level 1, 2, 3 or 4).
- From 27 February 2017, assessors will also need to recommend a client’s priority for home care services to the delegate for approval.
For further information:
- visit the department’s website; or
- subscribe to receive electronic updates; or
- call the My Aged Care service provider and assessor helpline on 1800 836 799.
- ACAT Short Course Material
- ACAT Guidance Framework for Home Care Package Level
- User Guide: ACAT Guidance Framework for Home Care Package Level
- Guidance on Priority for Home Care Services
- QRG13 – Management of Home Care Packages from 27 February 2017
- Assessor Fact Sheet – Home Care changes overview
- Assessor Fact Sheet – Client information and support
- Assessor Fact Sheet – Home Care national prioritisation process
This fact sheet provides general guidance to support the implementation of the Increasing Choice in Home Care reforms. It does not constitute legal advice, nor is it a substitute for responsibilities under the legislative framework.