How do I access aged care?
How you access aged care services depends on the services you require. The first step is always the assessment process, which will determine whether you are then looking for residential aged care or for in-home support services.
The first step to accessing aged care is to arrange an individual assessment – this assessment will determine whether you're eligible for government support as well as what level of care you need. This assessment can be arranged by calling My Aged Care on 1800 200 422.
At the completion of the assessment you will be given an Aged Care Client Record (ACCR). Your ACCR confirms your eligibility to receive funding for an aged care service and provides a comprehensive assessment of your care requirements. You will need to provide this when applying for residential care or a home care package.
Step 2. Choosing a residence
If you have been assessed as eligible for residential care, the next step is to find the residence that is right for you. You can find out about residences in your area or the area of your choice through the My Aged Care website.
You can also search by postcode and care type on the BlueCross website to find a BlueCross residence to suit your needs. With 24 residences across Melbourne, ranging in style and features, we have a number of options to choose from. All BlueCross residence offer our exceptional level of care and lifestyle services.
Once you have a shortlist of residences, it's a good idea to tour each of them to get a feel for what they have to offer and whether they can meet your needs. Each residence will be different with a unique feel, so it's about working out what's right for you. We have developed a helpful checklist of things to consider when looking for an aged care residence, with a printable version that you can take with you.
Step 3. The application process
Each provider will have their own application process. Essentially you will need to complete an application form, provide all the relevant documentation and sign a Residential Agreement.
You will also need to lodge an income and asset assessment with Centrelink so that the Department of Human Services can determine your fees or level of support. We have a helpful income and assets checklist to assist you to record the information required.
The acceptance of all applications is at the discretion of the provide and subject to whether there are any vacancies at the residence and consideration of whether they can provide the right support and environment to meet your needs. Your safety and wellbeing will always be the top priority.
Step 4. Moving in
When moving into your new home, remember to notify people of your change of address. Ask the aged care residence what furniture is provided and what you may be able to bring from home, if there are preferred admission times and how you should label your belongings.
At BlueCross, we provide all new residents with a welcome pack that outlines everything you need to know to support a smooth transition and help you adjust to your new surroundings. Our Residence Manager or Clinical Care Coordinator will go through this with you and answer any questions you may have on the day of admission.
Step 2. The application process
If you have been assessed as eligible for in-home care or community package, you will be put in contact with a provider in your area or you can request for your package to be delivered by your preferred provider. Please note in some areas there may be a waiting period for packages as only a certain number are allocated for each region and provider by the government.
If you are a self-funded retiree, and planning to commence a Home Care Package, you may be required to complete an income assessment form. We have a helpful income and assets checklist to assist you to record the information required.
Step 3. Developing your care plan
Once you have been offered a package, a Case Manager or qualified professional from the provider will visit you to help tailor and set up the care and services that you require. This is called your care plan and will form the agreement between yourself and the aged care provider.
The care plan might cover:
the services you will receive and who will provide them
how much involvement the service provider will have in managing and coordinating your services
when your services are delivered (frequency and schedule, such as which day of the week and at what time)
how much you will pay.
Once you agree to your care plan your services will commence.