Understanding Your Aged Care Options
It’s not something many people enjoy talking about, but Aged Care is becoming a more important issue that we all need to be thinking about.
Given the number of people over age 85 is expected to triple over the next 30 years, and one-third of men and half of all women who reach age 65 will live in aged care at some point in time, taking the time to learn more about your aged care options is more important than ever.
Advances in health care are helping people live longer and have a more fulfilling retirement, more people are making it into their senior years will need some form of assistance. The type of assistance required is also changing, as more retirees are choosing to remain in their own homes rather than moving to residential aged care.
Aged Care Accommodation Options
There are a range of Aged Care accommodation options including:
- Remaining in your own home
- Living with family for example in a Granny flat
- Living with a Carer
- Moving to a Retirement Village
- Entering an Aged Care facility
What you need to know
Aged care is often urgent and it can feel like you are in ‘crisis mode’ when you or a family member needs to move into an aged care facility.
It’s important to step back and consider the following:
- The level of care you need
- What options are available
- What are the costs
- How you will meet these costs.
There are a number of common misconceptions to avoid including:
- You will need to sell your home– as under some scenarios you may be better to retain it and rent it out
- Your Centrelink/DVA pension will meet the cost of care – as increasingly you will need to fund part of these costs yourself
- Your Centrelink/DVA pension won’t change – as the decisions you make can have a big impact on your pension
- The fees and charges are fixed – as these are calculated for each person based on their circumstances and are reviewed regularly
Some of the key triggers for seeking advice include:
- Should you sell or keep the family home or rent it out?
- How should you fund the Refundable Accommodation Deposit (RAD)?
- Should you pay part as a Daily Accommodation Payment (DAP)?
- What will be the impact on your Centrelink/DVA (Dept of Veterans Affairs) pension?
- What are the Dementia and Veteran’s Supplements
- What Residential Care and Home Care packages are available for Ex-Prisoners of War and Victoria Cross
- How can you minimise the ongoing costs of care?
- How can you structure your cash flow to meet these costs and still have money for extras?
- What options can you use to preserve your assets for your estate if this is important to you?
- Using the free Aged Care Complaints Scheme
Types of Aged Care
Residential Aged Care facilities
All aged care facilities must be certified to be eligible to receive Government funding
The My Aged Care Aged care homes web page explains that “Aged care homes are owned and run by people who are approved by the Australian Government to care for you. The aged care system in Australia aims to make sure that all older people can receive support and quality care when they need it”. Read more about “Considering an aged care home”, “Living in an aged care home” or “End of life care in aged care homes” at the My Aged Care Aged care homes web page.
Contact Better Ageing at Hume Health & Lifestyle – if you would like to contribute to this page and while you are here please visit our other Better Ageing pages:
Better Ageing in the Hume Region North East Victoria Home Care Packages Living with Family Retirement Villages Residential Aged Care Fees Aged Care Means Testing Entering Aged Care Aged Care Accommodation Options Falls Prevention Improving Care for Older People Better Ageing Links