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Life Care Welcomes National Reforms

Published: 01 Mar 2017

The Department of Health’s Increasing Choice in Home Care reforms will impact the aged care sector giving greater choice to the individual’s seeking support once approved for a Home Care Package (HCP). Essentially the individual will be provided with funding based on their needs and encouraged to seek out the best care options to suit those needs – giving the individual complete control and choice over their care.

Life Care CEO Allen Candy explains that Life Care is accustomed to doing things differently and the Increasing Choice in Aged Care reforms are a welcome change. “The changes in the provision of Home Care Packages will allow a person who has been approved for a HCP to choose which provider they want to partner with that best meets their needs, no longer dictated by which provider has HCP’s available, which was the traditional method. It is important that the consumer and their families understand what they want to assist in maintaining their independence and community connections and to make their own choices. If the provider they are talking to can’t provide what they want, then they need to speak to another provider,” explains Candy. The reforms move financial risk to the providers and in doing so provide the consumer with more choice and control over how they spend their allocated funds. The changes will also create a healthier competition between providers with a greater expectation to ensure robust and adaptable services to meet individual needs for all people. Allen also adds “The current system which has supported our elderly for the last few decades is no longer financially sustainable and we need to adapt to keep up with an ageing population.”

Life Care is hopeful that the resulting increased exposure of the Aged Care sector that will encourage families to consider their own needs ahead of time.“It is important that as a community we are openly talking about the challenges that might face us as we age so we can plan for the future and be clear on our individual choices. Too often families do not plan until there is a crisis or an event that requires urgent decisions and little time for consultation and choices.”

82yo Margaret is living independently and looks forward to the support of Life Care at Home. Margaret explains that it is wonderful having a Life Care support worker visit her house to get some cleaning done and share a cup of tea . “I can ring them at any time and about anything and they also get me out and about,” says Margaret.