Older Australians will continue to be assessed for care services, such as meals and personal care, in the lead up to the introduction of the new Commonwealth Home Support Program.
Older people will also continue to enjoy social activities, outings and meals as the Government has extended funding for centre-based day care.
The Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Senator Jacinta Collins, has approved the extension of funding from 30 June 2014 to 30 June 2015 so that people continue to have access to Commonwealth HACC services.
Older Australians will continue to be assessed and receive information and coordinated care to make the right choices about services at home that best suit their needs.
This is particularly important for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
Senator Collins said extending funding for a further year would align funding end dates for all Commonwealth HACC funded services and smooth the transition to the new Commonwealth Home Support Program, which is part of the Living Longer Living Better reforms.
“Older Australians will continue to access care, while providers will have certainty about funding, which is important in managing and planning staffing and services,” she said.
The Commonwealth Home Support Program, which starts on 1 July 2015, is a new and streamlined approach combining basic home support services, such as Commonwealth HACC program for older people, the National Respite for Carers Program, the Day Therapy Centres program and the Assistance with Care and Housing for the Aged program.
“This will provide a comprehensive program of basic home support for older Australians so they can stay at home, and reduce red tape for service providers,” Senator Collins said.
The Department of Health and Ageing will be in contact with Commonwealth HACC service providers shortly to discuss administrative arrangements for contract extensions.
Alternatively, service providers can contact the HACC Provider Helpdesk on 1800 057 616 or HACC.Reform@health.gov.au. The Aged Care Provider Portal will be updated with relevant information.