Receiving Interim Home Care Services While You Wait for Your Package

Feedback from a concerned daughter in response to an Ad about starting home care

“The problem is that the waiting time for that help is too long. And it really is up to us in the meantime to look after our Mum. The reality is not as bright as portrayed on TV and other sources. My mother was assessed on level 3-4 (ACAT) and we believed she would be helped on that level immediately after leaving the hospital and rehab centre. After a few months of waiting, she got help for 2 hours per week assigned on level 1. And we were told that to have the appropriate level of care assigned, it could take as long as 3-5 years. Not terribly optimistic news for someone who is 86.”

Have you had this experience?

If so, then you are not alone. There is a waitlist for home care packages hence another reason to start your application process sooner than later. My Aged Care must work with a specific allocation of home care packages from the Australian Government and this could mean waiting for longer than you are willing to. According to the My Aged Care website, the average waiting times are as follows:

Level 1 – 6-9 months
Level 2 – 6-9 months
Level 3 – 12 months+
Level 4 – 12 months+

If this is too long to wait, you have a couple of options.

Access a home care interim package or private home care services while waiting for your home care package to be approved

When you have completed your ACAT Assessment, you will be approved for a home care package. But you might be approved for a lower level at first until a higher-level package becomes available. Either way there is a wait time before you receive home care.

For example, if you are approved for a level 3 home care package, your waiting time is more than 12 months, maybe even another year or two. Therefore you will be offered an interim level 1 or 2 package so that you can start accessing home care support.

In this example, you can start getting some home care support for 2-5 hours per week while you wait for your level 3 home care services to come through. The ideal situation would be to receive help immediately at the level you are assigned, however this is not the case today.

St Louis provides both interim packages and private home care services while you wait for your home care package to be approved. A home care interim package works in the same way as a normal home care package, so you will receive all the services that are part of a normal home care package. Receiving an interim package will not mean that your actual home care package will take longer, it just means you can access care sooner.

The services in a home care package can be used in a number of ways:

  • Support at home for grooming, shopping, cleaning and cooking
  • For social support and keeping you connected to your community
  • For transport to buy groceries, go to appointments and other places
  • Clinical support to help you with wound management and prescriptions

The good news is that in the recent budget, the Australian Government allocated $1.6 billion to home care packages which will see a boost in the availability of home care packages over the next few years.

Home care provides the support so that you can stay at home longer or for the rest of your elderly years. Start accessing it as soon as you can with private services or an interim home care package. Call us at St Louis Home Care Adelaide on 08 8332 0950 or St Louis Home Care Victor Harbor on 08 8552 1481 to discuss your options.