Changes to aged care system begins 1 July

Changes to aged care system begins 1 July

From 1 July, a range of important changes to the aged care system come into effect. The changes will give older Australians more choice, more control, and more of the services they might need to stay in their own home for longer.

With around 3.5 million Australians needing some form of aged care by 2050, fundamental changes are needed now to ensure the aged care system is sustainable and puts control back into the hands of consumers.

Changes starting from 1 July include:
  • More support for older people to stay independent and in their own home through more home care packages to meet their needs.
  • People will have greater choice and flexibility for how they pay for accommodation and services, whether it is a refundable accommodation deposit, a daily accommodation payment, or a combination of both, with 28 days to decide how they would like to pay.
  • Transparent accommodation prices and services, with all residential aged care providers required to publish the maximum amount they charge for accommodation and extra services, giving older people and their families more choice and transparency in what providers charge.
  • A new means test in residential care will help determine a persons fair contribution, if any, to their care and accommodation, based on both their assets and income. New means test arrangements will also apply to home care.
  • New capping arrangements will help make the system more affordable overall for individuals. A $25,000 annual cap to means tested care fees in residential care will be introduced, and caps will also be in place for home care, set at $5,000 a year for part pensioners and $10,000 a year for self-funded retirees. A $60,000 lifetime cap on means tested care fees across both home and residential care will limit the total cost an individual will spend on their care overall.

Consumers will now have access to an unprecedented level of information through the MyAgedCare gateway, where people can compare prices and features in the one place. They can also use an online fee estimator for an idea of what they can expect to pay for their care. You can contact the My Aged Care gateway on 1800 200 422 or visit www.myagedcare.gov.au.

For more information on NSML's Aged Care services, please contact Janet Smith, Aged Care Coordinator, at jsmith@nsml.com.au or phone 9477 8700.