When considering Aged Care options, Home Care can help maintain independence

Aged CareWealth Management

16 July 2021

There are many services that can help you maintain a good quality of life as you get older. While aged care homes might be suitable for those that need full time support and respite care can fill a gap while your family or carer is away, it’s possible that a Home Care Package to assist with day-to-day tasks around the house, could help you stay in your own home for longer.

The first thing to understand is that asking for help doesn’t mean losing your independence; it can be quite the opposite. Getting a little help with your daily activities should allow you to stay independent in your own home for as long as possible. In fact, a little support at home can lead to a much better quality of life for both you and your carer/s.

What does Home Care involve?

Help at home looks different for everyone. It may mean getting assistance with shopping, cleaning, gardening and cooking. Or it could be receiving help with personal care to bath, dress, and get in and out of bed. It may even mean getting modifications to improve your safety and movement around the house. And you could be able to access nursing care services for at-home help to treat and monitor your ongoing medical conditions.

Home Care can also provide access to transport services to help get you out and about to appointments and community activities. And it might include social support services such as in-home social calls and phone and internet communication services.

Home Care eligibility and cost

Eligibility for a Home Care Package is based on need and requires an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) Assessment. You should consider arranging an ACAT assessment if you:

  • Have noticed a change in what you can do or remember.

  • Have been diagnosed with a medical condition or reduced mobility.

  • Have experienced a change in family care arrangements.

  • Have experienced a recent fall or hospital admission and are:

    • 65 years or older, or;

    • 50 years or older for Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people.

You can apply for an ACAT assessment via the myagedcare.gov.au website.

If you are just starting out on your aged care journey, negotiating the multitude of options and ‘red tape’ can be quite daunting. ¬ While a financial adviser may not be the first person you think to consult as you begin your aged care journey, seeking advice from an Aged Care specialist adviser can assist in several ways, including helping to ensure:

  • The ownership of your assets or investments is structured appropriately for your changing circumstances.

  • You have the ongoing cash flow to meet aged care costs.

  • Your Centrelink/Department of Veteran’s affairs entitlements are maximised.

  • Your estate planning is up to date.

If you’d like any more information or assistance planning your aged care journey, contact us so we can put you in touch with one of our FPA accredited Aged Care specialist advisers.

Author: Samantha Murnane

Samantha has over 18 years’ experience in the financial planning industry. She has completed a Bachelor of Business majoring in Accounting, holds an Advanced Diploma in Financial Services (Financial Planning) and has been a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® professional for over 10 years. Samantha has successfully completed the educational requirements to be a FASEA compliant adviser. Samantha enjoys working with clients to help them set realistic goals and provides advice in areas such as superannuation, investments, Centrelink and cash flow management to assist with achieving strong financial outcomes. Her specialities are Self Managed Super Fund Wealth Management & Aged Care. Samantha's broad experience and knowledge enable her to create tailored financial strategies that allow clients to meet their goals and achieve the financial freedom to live the life they want to live. She helps clients accumulate and manage their wealth and income on an ongoing basis. Samantha is also a Financial Planning Associated Aged Care Specialist Adviser and is an Accredited Aged Care ProfessionalTM with Aged Care Steps. As such, she helps clients with navigating the financial aspects of the aged care system. In particular, Samantha assists clients with advice on structuring assets to fund aged care entry costs and provides cash flow analysis for the payment of ongoing aged care fees. She also provides advice on the Centrelink and estate planning implications of entering residential aged care.