Receiving confirmation of your Home Care Package allocation is a moment of immense relief. It means that you are now on the path to securing the support that you (or a loved one) needs for safe, independent living in the comfort of your own surroundings.
However, the process isn’t over just yet. Home care packages must also be supported by a home care plan. If you are feeling a little confused, the following guide will answer all of your queries, including;
- What is a home care package care plan?
- When do home care package providers expect them?
- What features can be included in home care packages?
- How should home care package care plans be planned?
- Can home care packages be changed?
To gain more help with your home care package care plan, call Home Caring on 1300 875 377 today!
What is a home care package care plan?
Once it has been confirmed that home care packages are the best solution for your ongoing care needs, a care plan is used to set out the details. It will document your home care requirements, the services that will be used to satisfy those demands, and a schedule of who and when the home care packages will be provided.
The home care package care plan may relate to home care package level 1, home care package level 2, home care package level 3, or home care package level 4. Meanwhile, it also provides confirmation relating to the cost of home care packages.
A home care package care plan is a written document that is delivered by home care package providers following the ACAT assessment that you will have already completed. There is an eight-week expiry date at the bottom of your activation letter while your care provider has 14 days from the day you commence the Home Care Agreement to issue a finalized and detailed plan.
What should be included in a home care package care plan?
Full details of the legislation can be found in Part III of the User Right Principles 2014 Compilation No.10. When looking at care solutions for yourself or a loved one, home care package providers can explain all details with clarity. However, the big question revolves around what features should be included. The following elements should be carefully considered to ensure that the care plan is built to meet your requirements.
Support with daily personal care is the most important aspect of the home care package care plan. It covers daily hygiene routines, as well as tasks like getting dressed. This type of personal care may extend to administering medications. When this type of care is tailored to reflect your personal needs, home living remains a safe and convenient solution that promotes health and happiness. Consistent results make it a central focus of any successful care plan.
Even if you are capable of maintaining good hygiene and personal care, keeping the home safe and organised may be significantly tougher. Domestic assistance includes cleaning duties such as making the beds, washing your clothes, putting groceries away, decluttering, and welcoming guests to the home. It creates a safe home free from hazards and allergens. House maintenance and gardening duties can be incorporated into the care plan to create a better environment and deter burglars.
Getting older or living with a condition can make standard home surroundings feel unsuitable. Home modifications can aid mobility and encourage greater independence. Common adaptations could include handrails, access rails, wetroom facilities, stairlifts, and lowered work surfaces. If those household changes can create a better quality of life, dedicating a chunk of your personal home care package budget to this work is advised. Assistive items like pressure-relieving mattresses are used too.
Shopping and wellbeing
In addition to health and happiness in the home, it will be necessary to consider outside tasks. A carer can prepare meals in the home and complete your grocery shopping, or accompany you to the shops. Likewise, driving to complete errands or attend classes and activities designed to promote improved wellbeing can be incorporated. The social elements, combined with the benefits of meditation and light physical exercise can make it an essential feature of a winning care strategy.
Home care packages aren’t only designed to support the individual who needs daily help. It additionally exists to support families and primary caregivers. Respite care can be incorporated into the documented care plan. This can be used when a caregiver is on vacation, is recovering from an illness, or simply needs a break. Juggling caregiving duties with other life responsibilities is tough work, the addition of respite care makes the situation more manageable.
The different care package care plan levels explained
When receiving your letter of home care package confirmation, you will notice that it will include details of the level of support that has been agreed. The different levels correspond to your current health and home care requirements. The government funding increases through the categories. Their individual definitions are as follows:
- Home care package level 1 is designed to support people with basic needs and is capped at $8,927.90 per year. It equates to average support of around 2-3 hours each week.
- Home care package level 2 is designed to support individuals with low care needs. They were formerly known as Community Aged Care Packages and are capped at $15,705.95 per year.
- Home care package level 3 is aimed at individuals with intermediate care needs and is capped at $34,174.95 per year. It usually translates to around 10 hours per week and can include social care.
- Home care package level 4, formerly called Extended Aged Care at Home, is for those with the greatest needs. Applicants receive up to $51,808.10 per year and is often used for people with conditions like Parkinson’s.
Each of the four levels of home care is further supported by both Dementia Supplement and the Veterans’ Supplement for eligible individuals.
Arranging your home care package care plan
A deeper understanding of your funding and the timeline should enable you to get started with the process in style. Nonetheless, knowing how to prepare the care plan is vital too. Individuals (or primary carers) must work closely with the home care package providers to build a dedicated care plan that follows the advice set out by the ACAT Assessment.
Before confirming what services their annual budget will be used on, it’s important to think about what you (or your parents) want the home care package to actually do. Are you hoping to retain more independence? Feel safer in the home? Reduce discomfort in daily tasks? Enjoy more quality time with loved ones? Or maintain a healthy lifestyle?
Ultimately, we all want home care to encourage a better quality of life, but having a clear understanding of how you define a better life is vital. Following this, you can think about the individual services that may be required.
By building a comprehensive and calculated care plan with your care providers, you can think about the key factors by asking key questions. Such as;
- Is the type of service necessary and likely to benefit your life?
- Would it be better to have an in-house or external service?
- How much will the service cost in relation to your annual budget?
- How can providers work alongside the support of primary caregivers?
- How frequently will the service be required?
When all of the above issues are under control, working out the full plan should be easy. Once submitted and confirmed, you can start to receive the care with instant results.
How to review or change a care package care plan
By having home care package providers supply the details within 14 days of commencing the Home Care Agreement, you can be sure that the services are perfectly matched to your current needs. However, those needs could change drastically over the coming years.
Life expectancy increases by around 0.2% per year, meaning Australians are living nearly 10 years longer today (83.64 years) compared to 40 years ago (74.49 years). Physical and mental cognitive decline can progress with age, resulting in a need for more significant care support. For example, the home care package levels may increase while new services may be added to maintain a safe and suitable living situation.
Individuals can request care plan reviews with their ACAT assessor at any time. Even if you (or your loved one) does not feel it is needed, you must complete an annual review to confirm that all aspects are aligned to the current requirements.
Updates to the care package care plan cannot be made without the individual’s agreement (unless they are unable to make the decision) while it is also important to keep the cost of home care packages in mind to ensure that their agreed budget from the Australian Government’s Department of Health is used effectively.
Changes must be discussed openly before being confirmed in writing, with the patient keeping one copy and the care providers keeping another. Updates must then be implemented in the same manner as the original document.