There are many different types of aged care services available to support you, whatever your needs.
We can help you to understand your choices and make the right decisions for you and your family.
The 12 tips of Christmas
Christmas can be a stressful and emotional time for many families, in addition to the cooking, presents and visiting schedules many people are also faced with the need to look at aged care.
So, if the conversation this Christmas turns to aged care, here are my tips for navigating the maze.
- Talk about it.Conversations about care can be hard. Maintaining good communication and having a “with you” rather than “to you” attitude can make the transition easier for everyone.
- Get an ACAT.The first step in accessing a Home Care Package, respite or moving to an aged care facility is to have your care needs assessed by the Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT). It is an easy process but you can be waiting many weeks, sometimes months, at busy times.
- Prepare for Home Care.There’s a range of services to help you stay at home, including the Commonwealth Home Support Programme, Home Care Packages, DVA services and private care services. It can be a juggle.
- Have a Break.Respite in an aged care facility can give carer’s a much-needed break. It is also a great way for you to “try before you buy”.
- Do the Downsize.Retirement villages and land lease communities are becoming a popular choice for people who need some care because they provide the independence to do what you can for yourself with care and support for things that you can’t (or don’t want to) do.
- Research your options.Whether you are considering downsizing to a Retirement Village or Land Lease Community or a move into residential aged care you need to do your research, take a tour, join in an activity or attend an open day.
- Pension Changes.If you receive a pension make sure you understand the impact of your move on your pension and other entitlements such as rent assistance and concession cards.
- Timing.If you are a member of a couple then timing your move into aged care can make a significant difference to your cost of aged care. Be sure to understand the impact of moving together or separately (even a day apart).
- Know the rights and wrongs of granny flats.Family looking after family is not a new concept but such arrangements can have serious implications on your pension, tax, ability to fund care in the future and estate planning.
- Have a trusted Attorney.An Enduring Power of Attorney enables a trusted person, rather than a tribunal or a court, to make decisions for you when you can’t. Make sure you have one.
- Estate Plan.A good estate plan is more than “just a will” – it considers assets that will be part of the estate and those that won’t and provides a clear document of your wishes.
- Get Advice.Crunching all of the numbers can be complex. Seeking advice from professionals who specialise in this area will ensure that you understand the choices available, strategies to make the move affordable and there are no nasty surprises down the track.