It is important that students gain an understanding of the funding models in aged care, as this can affect a client’s eligibility for a service and/or the amount the older person needs to pay for the service
Aged Care Packages
Eligibility for aged care services can depend on a person's health, how the person is managing at home, and current support provided.
Packages can include:
- Short term care packages (Short term restorative care, respite care and transition care packages)
- Commonwealth Home Support Program (help at home)
- Home care packages (more complex care at home)
- Aged care home packages (an assessment of care needs using a tool called the Aged Care Funding Instrument (ACFI)
The fees an older person pays for services depends on the 1) level of the aged care package/extent of care provided, 2) provider charges, and 3) the older person's income assessment.
It may be useful for students to visit the myagedcare website. My Aged Care is the starting point to access Australian Government-funded aged care services. It provides information on the types of aged care services available, outlines the requirements for assessment of needs, and provides information on how funding and services are allocated.
It might also be useful for students and clinical supervisors to understand the types of care available to older people, and which allied health services are covered under help at home, short term care and aged care home packages, as not all allied health services are covered by all packages. Before offering a student placement, it is important for clinical supervisors to consider whether the services provided in the aged care setting will allow adequate exposure for the student to demonstrate competency for entry level practice.
More information relating to costs and inclusions relating to aged care can be found at the ‘Understanding Costs’ page of the myagedcare site.
Chronic Disease Management (formerly Enhanced Primary Care (EPC))
Chronic Disease Management (CDM) allows general practitioners to plan and coordinate the health care of clients with chronic or terminal medical conditions, including clients with these conditions who require multidisciplinary, team-based care from a GP and at least two other health or care providers. CDM includes information on items available under Medicare as part of this type of health care.
Department of Veterans Affairs
In the Health and Treatment subpage of the DVA website, students can access information on the eligibility for health and injury treatments, care at home or aged care and coverage of health care costs for Department of Veterans Affairs clients.
Privately funded care
Some Australians are not eligible for government-funded services. If an older person is not eligible or are waiting for services to become available, they may access privately-funded services. In this instance, the full cost of these services is covered by the client. Some examples include retirement villages and retirement homes.
Equipment supply with medical aid subsidy schemes
Medical aid subsidy schemes cover considerations such as mobility, incontinence and daily living aids, and will vary between states and territories. The level of knowledge required by students will depend on the type of clinical placement being offered.