This blog was created as part of our Journey of Care for the Ageing Event in collaboration with B’nai B’rith and Caulfield Shule.
What is Residential Aged Care?
Residential aged care is for senior Australians who can no longer live independently at home. The Australian Government funds residential aged care to make it more affordable and accessible. Moving loved ones into aged care can be a complex and emotionally draining experience.
Questions to consider before entering care?
- What are the costs associated with aged care?
- Is there any way to reduce any of these costs?
- Could I be eligible for a concessional bed?
- Have I got my ACAS assessment?
- Am I eligible for respite care?
- How can I fund the entry and ongoing fees?
- Will I need to sell the family home?
- How will this impact my pension?
- What do I need to tell Centrelink?
- Who can help me answer all these questions?
Common pitfalls to be aware of:
- Choosing the right level of care – There are distinct differences in the type of care provided at independent living, retirement villages and residential aged care facilities. Choosing the wrong type of facility can be an extremely costly decision from both a health and financial standpoint.
- Overpaying – Aged care facilities are funding by the government for every bed they have occupied. As a result, the entry costs for aged care are often heavily negotiable.
- Poor understanding of the costs – The costs of residential aged care can be confusing and overwhelming. Residents often underestimate the ongoing expenses and fail to budget adequately for them.
- Failing to explore all options – There are many different ways to fund the entry costs and monthly fees of aged care, each with a different impact on means-tested fees and the government pension. It is important to explore all options before making a final decision.
Where should I start this process?
- The first step in the process is to arrange an ACAS assessment as this is your ‘passport’ into the aged care sector
- Next, it’s important to get a complete understanding of the costs involved as well as your current financial position
- Finally, it is certainly recommended to seek professional advice to avoid overpaying for the cost of entry and ongoing monthly fees
JOSEPH PALMER & SONS (VIC)