The Australian Government is making it easier for older Australians to access the care they need to remain living in their own home through new home support assessment arrangements.
Federal Member for Parkes, Mark Coulton said the Government is calling for tenders to deliver around 240,000 assessments to people seeking aged care support in the home from 1 July 2015.
The tender will establish a consistent approach to assessment services for people seeking support through the Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP).
The CHSP will commence on 1 July 2015 and will act as a single, streamlined programme that rolls several existing programmes into one, including Commonwealth Home and Community Care (HACC) and the National Respite for Carers Programme.
“Organisations who successfully tender will form part of a national network of My Aged Care Regional Assessment Services, undertaking face-to-face assessments of older people using a standardised framework,” Mr Coulton said.
“They will then make a referral to locally available services.”
“This means that for the first time, there will be a single point of entry into the aged care system, making it easier for older people to identify and get the information and help they need to stay independent,” Mr Coulton said.
Mr Coulton said that as part of these changes, home support assessments will be separated from service delivery.
“This will help ensure the focus is on individuals’ needs and goals,” Mr Coulton said.
“We know that most people want to remain living in their own home for as long as possible,” said Mr Coulton.
“The new assessment services will determine the mix of services people need to live in their own home, and reassess them if their circumstances change, making it easier for them to access the information and care that they need to remain at home,” Mr Coulton said.
Mr Coulton said that organisations from all jurisdictions will have the opportunity to apply to provide home support assessments, including those which currently receive funding under the Commonwealth Home and Community Care (HACC) programme.
Organisations can apply individually or as part of a consortium to deliver services across a region.
Local and specialist organisations, such as those which support Culturally and Linguistically Diverse and Indigenous communities, are encouraged to apply as part of a larger consortium.