Home Care Packages
Alfred Health is a not-for-profit home care package provider. A Home Care Package provides coordinated care and services that help older Australians to live safely and independently in their own home for as long as it is safe and appropriate to do so.
What we do
Our goals are to support our clients:
- To optimise their health and well-being in accordance with their needs, goals and preferences
- To live safely and independently at home
- To keep them connected to their community
In partnership with our clients and families, we assess their care needs, develop a care plan, and deliver a coordinated package of care and services to meet their individual needs.
Our case managers are allied health professionals or registered nurses with significant expertise and experience in working with older people.
As part of Alfred Health, the Home care packages team works closely with other Alfred Health services. This benefits our clients and families by improving communication and coordination of their health care needs.
Who we care for
We care for clients living within a 15 km radius of Alfred Health, including local government areas of Port Phillip, City of Melbourne, Glen Eira, Stonnington, Bayside & Kingston Councils.
What to expect
Each package is tailored to meet your individual needs, and is delivered using a consumer directed care focus. Having a consumer focus means that you have choice and flexibility in the support you need and access. Your home care package has a case manager who can assist you in co-ordinating and managing your care needs at home.
We respect your right to be treated with dignity, respect, maintain your identity, to be informed about your care and services and live the life you choose.
We have a wellness approach, which involves assessing, planning and delivering all care and services in a way that builds on your strengths and goals. This means we will actively encourage you to optimise your independence in your everyday activities as well as reducing any risks to living safely at home.
If you have short-term goals related to a loss of confidence or independence, we will support you to participate in reablement interventions to help you to return to your needed activities. This could involve learning a new skill, or re-learning a lost skill, minor modifications to your home or having access to equipment or assistive technology.
Depending on your needs, home care packages may include support with:
- Personal care, Domestic activities, shopping or gardening assistance
- Transport to appointments, needed shopping or to attend social activities
- Social support
- Respite care, either in-home or day program
- Nursing for medication assistance or wound care
- Allied health, therapy services and exercise classes
- Minor home maintenance, reasonably required for safety & minor home modifications
- Prescribed equipment and assistive technology
Commonly asked questions
Why choose Alfred Health?
As part of Alfred Health, your Home care packages team works closely with other Alfred Health services including:
- The Alfred, Caulfield and Sandringham Hospitals for acute and subacute or rehabilitation care
- Outpatient clinics, for example, geriatrics, continence, pain management, cognitive decline and memory service
- Allied health and nursing services such as podiatry, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, nutrition, social work, speech therapy, community health nurses, hydrotherapy and healthy living or exercise programs.
Our home care package service also shared the same medical record with other Alfred health services and clinics. This integration in Alfred Health benefits you by improving communication and coordination of your health care needs.
What can my case manager help me with?
Every person receiving a home care package is allocated a case manager. Your case manager works with you and your significant others to provide care and services to support you at home. Your case manager and team are allied health professionals or nurses. This means that they understand your care needs from a health, wellness and reablement perspective.
Your case manager can:
- Provide initial and ongoing assessment of your care and support needs at home
- Help you to understand what care or services are possible under Home care package legislation and guidelines
- In partnership with you:
- Develop a care plan which outlines your needs and goals
- Develop a service schedule. The service schedule outlines your services, when they happen and whom is providing the direct care
- Develop a budget plan, which includes the care and services which can be afforded within your package funding
- Monitor and coordinate your care plan, service schedule and budget
- Make adjustments to your care plan, schedule and budget when your needs, goals, priorities or preferences change
- Liaise with service providers to keep them informed regarding any changes in your care plan
- Work with you and your family to ensure that care and services are culturally appropriate
- Help to identify and address any risks to your safety
- Support timely and appropriate referral/s to other organisations and/or providers of other care and services if your needs change
- Identify the need for referral to allied health services to maximise your independence
- Provide support and guidance in understanding and accessing aged care and health care services
- As a health professional, advocate for you for example, in dealing with other health services
Your case manager can’t:
- Take responsibility for any decisions or day-to-day management of:
- Lifestyle & accommodation issues
- Financial issues
- Medical or health issues
- Take responsibility for medical emergencies
- Be a crisis management tool or counsellor
- Take responsibility for or manage upkeep of your private home and appliances
- Provide an afterhours case management service
- Do things that you can do for yourself, or that your family can help you with
- Force you to accept services. We can provide recommendations, but the choice is up to you
How can I work best with my home care package team?
- Let us know your preferred way of contact, for example, by phone or email
- Let us know your preferred family contact person
- Keep your case manager up-to-date with any changes in your situation or needs
- Communicate openly and respectfully with your case manager and home care package team
- When you call us, please tell us why you are calling so that we can best direct your call
- Understand that along with your case manager, you are part of a wider home care package team. Other people in the team can also assist with your query, for example, the Client Services Officer can assist with care shift questions, changes or cancellations
- Understand that your Case manager and team are required to work within relevant Home Care Package legislation and guidelines
- Consider and develop an emergency plan. Your emergency plan may include:
- Your contact people in case of emergency
- If you have a personal alarm system and what type
- If you have a keylock, and whom you consent to access this
- What you would like the home care package team to do in event that you do not answer the door to a scheduled visit from a carer
- If there is a disruption to your planned services eg. In relation to the pandemic, is there family or others whom can provide you with extra assistance?
- Your preferred hospital for admission if ever needed
- Emergency residential care respite options or emergency accommodation options
- Have decision-making supports in place. We recommend that you have decision-making supports in place should you ever be unable to make your own decisions. In addition, we recommend that any regular family or other supports are aware of your needs and preferences and are able to assist as required. We can provide guidance in how to access decision-making support arrangements.
- Think about your care preferences and future planning. Your case manager can assist you in identifying what your care needs are and organizing care and services within the available home care package funding. Your case manager can also assist in identifying any risks to your health or safety, and possible options for managing risks. However, if your care needs or risks to your safety and well-being become too great to be met within available case management and home care package resources, we recommend that you consider other alternatives to living at home. We can provide guidance in considering other options.
What can I expect initially and ongoing?
Initially, our team leader or one of our case managers will meet with you to discuss how the package works; complete any sign-up documents and home care package agreements; as well as address any queries or concerns you may have.
One of our case manager assistants and case manager will then find out more about you, your health, care needs, personal situation and preferences. Together you will develop a care plan which outlines support you need to stay well and at home. Your case manager will develop a budget with you, as well as organise direct care services and any referrals if needed.
From there, your case manager will monitor how your package is meeting your care needs, as well as direct contact by phone or home visits, where required. Our home care package team is in regular communication with your direct care providers who let us know how things are going and if there are any issues. Please also contact us if you ever have any concerns or worries.
Who is involved in my Home care package?
Your team consists of:
- Any nominated family member, friend or advocate
- Alfred Health Home care packages team leader
- Case managers, whom have professional backgrounds in nursing, social work, occupational therapy, or physiotherapy
- Allied health assistants
- Administration officer
- Your direct carers and service providers at home
Who provides the direct care?
Alfred Health works with a number of carefully selected and monitored local agencies that provide the direct care workers whom visit the clients in their own homes. This allows Alfred Health a broader access to direct care workers to match with clients’ needs (e.g. language skills, gender, medication or dementia training). All Alfred Health and contracted service provider staff have appropriate training, qualifications and police checks and the quality of their service is closely monitored.
What qualifications do the direct care workers have? How do you monitor the quality of their work?
Alfred Health ensures that private service providers are using staff that have undergone relevant safety checks and have qualifications necessary for their roles. All direct care workers employed by these private service providers have minimum qualifications including first aid certification and relevant experience working with older people. The private service providers have undergone a selection process as approved providers with Alfred Health and have signed a contract with service criteria for quality standards, training and support of their staff.
We work with you in ensuring the quality of the service delivered is meeting your needs. We would ask that you keep your Alfred Health case manager informed of the quality of the work so we can inform their employer and provide feedback accordingly.
What is the hourly rate for the services you provide under a home care package?
Hourly rates charged by private service providers can vary considerably. Generally, extra charges apply for any services provided afterhours, on weekends or on public holidays. In addition, a cancellation fee applies to most services if adequate notice of cancellation is not given. Your case manager, allied health assistant or administration officer can provide you with further information regarding rates of service providers and other costs or charges.
If I need to cancel a shift, how much notice do I need to give?
Alfred Health requires one business days’ notice for cancellations of services. Please let your case manager or home care package office know of any cancellations or changes to your care needs as soon as possible.
What is my home care package budget?
The care and services you receive will be paid for using your home care package budget. The total amount of your budget is made up of what the Australian Government pays (subsidies and supplements), and what you may be asked to pay (an income tested fee, if applicable).
Your package budget shows what funds are available in your budget. It is important to remember your care and services must fit within your package budget. You can make additional contributions to top up your budget if you need to.
You are actively involved in deciding how home care package funds are spent. We work with you to ensure that the home care funding is used in accordance with government/ home care package guidelines and your identified needs in your care plan.
The pricing schedule (see link under ‘Resources’) outlines the Medicare subsidy for each package level minus the care management and package management fees. The remaining amount is used for direct care provision. Please be aware that your package level of care is determined by the Aged Care Assessment Service.
Any unspent funds will accumulate in the package, and carry-over year to year. We recommend that there is always some money accumulated in the package, to help manage any unplanned care or needs.
What fees will I have to pay?
Alfred Health does not charge a Basic Daily fee. You will have no out of pocket expenses with your home care package, unless you are required to pay an Income Tested Fee or you choose to make a contribution to your package funds. The income tested fee is determined by Services Australia (please see link under “Resources’, ‘Understanding fees for home care’). Alfred Health is obliged by the Australian Government to collect the income tested fee if Services Australia assesses that such a fee is payable.
How to access this service
How to access - Home Care Packages - Patients
To access a Home care Package, you will need an assessment by the Aged Care Assessment Service (ACAS) to assess, approve and assign you a Home Care Package for your needs.
Please call My Aged Care on 1800 200 422 or visit the My Aged Care website.
ResourcesAll patient resources
Aged Care Assessment Service
Aged Care Diversity Framework
Alfred Home Care Package Pricing Schedule 441 KB
Alfred Health Carer Services
A service that provides advice and support for carers located in Melbourne's south
Home care - a guide to your consumer rights
Home Care Packages - team profile 1 MB
Home Care Packages About Me Questionnaire 330 KB
Home care packages manual
My Aged Care
An Australian Government resource centre for aged care services
My Aged Care - Support for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds
Older person’s advocacy network
Understanding fees for home care