Home care packages (HCP) provide a co-ordinated package of services tailored to meet more complex care needs.
You’re expected to contribute to the cost of your care if you can afford it. Your contribution is made up of three types of fees explained in this article.
The packages are provided by a range of not-for-profit and commercial enterprises and are subsidised by the government. Therefore, an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT, or ACAS in Victoria) assessment is required to access a package.
These services are provided in the person’s home, including if they are living with children (or other friends/family members), non-homeowners in rental accommodation, granny flat arrangement or living in a retirement village.
All HCPs are required to be provided on a Consumer Directed Care (CDC) basis. The CDC approach encourages recipients of the package to identify their care goals and the level of control they would to have over the provision of services they receive.
When you are eligible to receive a HCP you are provided with a personalised budget so you can see how much funding is available and where it is being spent. This allows you the freedom to tailor the services to meet your own needs.
The package level assigned to you is based on your needs
There are four levels of Home Care Packages with different funding amounts ranging from basic needs to high care needs.
What do you pay?
Home care providers can charge consumers with three types of fees:
Basic daily fee + Income tested fee + additional fees for care services
(1)BASIC DAILY FEE.This is a flat fee each person pays.It is approximately 17.5% of a single aged care pension.The amount paid per day varies on the level package you receive:-
Level 1 – $9.44 per day
Level 2 – $9.99 per day
Level 3 – $10.27 per day
Level 4 – $10.54 per day
(2) a daily income-tested care fee (ITF)
The Daily income-tested fees range from $1.00 (fees calculated less than $1.00 per day are not charged) to a maximum of $30.25 per day.
The calculation used to work this out is: ITF = (assessable income LESS income free threshold) x 50%.
Assessable income includes all sources of income that are assessable under the Centrelink Income test plus any assessable Centrelink / DVA pensions (less energy supplement and minimum pension supplement)
Assessable Income also includes financial investments such as cash, term deposits, managed funds, shares, bonds & debentures, loans to other entities, gifts above allowable limits, gold bullion and superannuation in accumulation phase when over age pension age
The ITF is payable when a person’s assessable income is higher than the applicable income free threshold that applies to them.
FOR SINGLES: If the person’s income per annum is:
Up to $27,284: No ITF is payable
Over $63,670: The ITF is capped at $11,012.99 per annum
FOR COUPLES: If the couple's income combined per annum is:
Up to $43,770: No ITF is payable
Over $102,580: The ITF is capped at $11,012.99 per annum
(3)ADDITIONAL FEES for care or services not covered by the home care package.
It is important to remember that any care coordination and case management fees are paid to the provider from this budget.Ensure you discuss these with your provider prior.
Your aged care accredited financial planner can assist you with working out your ITF.
Written by Luisa Capezio and Craig Phillips, Phillips Wealth Partners.