Assessors: overview of My Aged Care representation changes

Page last updated: 04 July 2017

Information for My Aged Care assessors on the changes to client representation and additional information provided to health professionals, introduced to My Aged Care from 3 July 2017.

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In late 2016 the Department undertook consultation with the aged care sector to better understand what is, and what is not working well with My Aged Care through co-design workshops. Sector participants then had the opportunity to develop solutions across My Aged Care:

  • policy
  • process
  • system
  • communications

As a result of this process, My Aged Care is making improvements in two key areas:

  • better support for all clients, including clients with diverse needs, and
  • improving access to information for health professionals.

The following provides an overview of the representation and health professional changes in My Aged Care relevant to assessors in supporting older people to access services.

Overview of representation

If an older person is unable or unwilling to talk to My Aged Care, you may wish to help them set up a representative. For most older people this would be a family member or carer or friend. However, any individual can become a regular representative for an older person, with the client’s consent.

My Aged Care creates a client record for all representatives. This is to ensure that we are speaking to the right person each time they contact us.

What a representative can do

A representative for someone in My Aged Care is able to speak and act for the client, including:

  • give information to My Aged Care including to assessors, the My Aged Care contact centre and service providers
  • get information about a client’s progress in My Aged Care
  • make decisions about aged care assessment and referrals for aged care services
  • see and update aged care and personal information through the contact centre or on the My Aged Care client record on myGov
  • be listed as the primary contact so you are the first contact point for My Aged Care.

Regular and authorised representatives

My Aged Care has two types of representative: a regular representative and an authorised representative. 

Regular Representative

If the older person is capable of providing consent for someone else to speak and act on for them, they can set up someone else as their regular representative.

A regular representative can be the primary contact for client but will not receive correspondence from My Aged Care for the client.

Authorised Representative

If an older person is not capable of providing consent for someone else to speak on their behalf, they will need an authorised representative. Authorised representatives need to provide My Aged Care with legal documentation to show that they can legally act in this role.

An authorised representative will automatically be the primary contact for the client (unless they nominate another person to do this) and will receive correspondence from My Aged Care.

Changes to legal documentation to become an authorised representative

The legal documents My Aged Care accepts in order to become an authorised representative have changed.

Information about the documents My Aged Care accepts can be found on the My Aged Care website

These changes have been made to align the documentation with state and territory legislation and with the nature of decisions made in My Aged Care (i.e. personal/medical/lifestyle decisions rather than financial).

Changing representatives

A client or regular representative can call My Aged Care to cancel any existing regular representative appointments at any time.

If the older person no longer requires an authorised representative, the existing authorised representative will need to call My Aged Care to make the change. A new or additional authorised representative can be added by sending in a completed Appointment of a Representative Form as well as the correct legal documents.  

Using the ‘Appointment of a Representative’ form

Assessors may want to use the My Aged Care ‘Appointment of a Representative’ form to record putting a representative in place during an assessment.

The completed form can be attached to the client record and a representative created using the existing process on the Assessor Portal.

Actioning the ‘Appointment of a Representative” form

Clients may now be referred to you with an “Appointment of a Representative” form attached to their client record. The My Aged Care contact centre will be actioning these forms and creating representatives for the client if they are mailed or faxed to My Aged Care or attached to non-health professional webforms.

If the form is attached to a health professional webform, the My Aged Care contact centre will not have created a representative for the client. Assessors should use the information within the form to create a new representative for the client similar to the process used to create a representative on the Assessor Portal.

A small number of “Appointment of a Representative” forms are expected through this channel.  

Please refer to Quick Reference Guide – Registering representatives and adding relationships for more information, including the process for establishing authorised representatives as the primary contact for all calls and correspondence.

Information on representation for clients and their families

Information on representation is available for clients and their family and carers on the My Aged Care website.

The following fact sheets provide information for consumers, their families and carers on how to get help to talk to My Aged Care:

Other options for clients to get help with My Aged Care

For various reasons, some older people can’t talk with My Aged Care over the phone and are not able to put in place a representative. To ensure these people are still able to access aged care, My Aged Care allows specific groups to go direct to an aged care assessment without the client talking directly to the contact centre. This includes an older person who:

  • has a medical condition that means they can’t talk on the phone
  • is Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander who doesn’t feel comfortable talking on the phone
  • has poor hearing or are deaf and don’t have the technology to use the National Relay Service
  • lives in a remote community and does not have phone access or reception
  • doesn’t speak English and their language isn’t available on the Translating and Interpreting Service
  • is homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

Screening is not completed because in this instance, it is more appropriate for this information to be obtained by an assessor directly from a client at the time of assessment.

The My Aged Care contact centre staff have been trained to collect key information about the client related to the assessment including any communication difficulties they may have and why a particular assessment type was required.  This information will be available on the client record.

This process will better support clients with diverse needs get to an assessment. Due to the other options available to clients who are unable to speak to the contact centre, including additional options to add a representative, it is expected that few clients will be referred for assessments using this process.

Other changes

Additional information for health professionals

To support the role health professionals play in caring for their older patients, My Aged Care can provide them with additional aged care information about their patient. This includes:

  • if a referral has been made to an assessment organisation
  • the type of assessment
  • the name and contact details of the assessment organisation (after acceptance)
  • if the client has existing aged care approvals in place
  • if the client has been referred for services, including the type of services and if accepted by a provider
  • if the original inbound referral has been closed including the reason for closure

Providing an assessor’s contact details to a health professional seeks to better support the relationships between health professionals and assessors.

Adding information to a referral made to My Aged Care

If referrers have made a referral to My Aged Care, they can call My Aged Care and add relevant information to that referral.

The My Aged Care contact centre will verify the identity of the original referrer and add relevant information to the client story notes.

If the referrer is a health professional and a referral for assessment has been accepted, the My Aged Care contact centre will give the referrer the details of the assessment organisation so that they can pass the relevant information directly to the assessor.