Easier Comparisons for Home Care Prices
There has been significant variation amongst providers in amounts charged for administration, case management and home care services, like personal care, cleaning and gardening. Higher fees reduce the money available to pay for the care needed and it has been difficult to identify the costs and make comparisons.
From 1 July, providers will need to nominate a single price for each common home care service. If the provider offers a choice in the services which then impacts pricing, the provider will be able to show the minimum and maximum prices. The price shown in the Schedule must be the default price charged and a copy of the Schedule included with the client’s Home Care Agreement and Individualised Budget.
If there is a legitimate reason why a contracted price needs to differ from a published price, this will need to be negotiated and agreed with the client, and clearly documented - with reasons - in the Home Care Agreement.
The Schedule will include five common home care services, with definitions developed for each to enable easier comparison between providers:
Cleaning and household tasks
The cost of care management, often referred to as case management, will also be identified in the Schedule, and may include:
Reviewing the Agreement and Care Plan
Service coordination and scheduling
Administration costs will be identified in the Schedule as Package Management and must not include any costs that are unrelated to supporting a person’s care needs, for example, office costs.
Providers will be required to review and, update their pricing Schedule on the My Aged Care website annually. The Schedule (and a rationale for any price variations) will need to be incorporated Home Care Agreements and Individualised Budgets from 1 July 2019 and must also be provided to all existing clients by 1 July 2020.
When selecting a home care provider it is important to ensure you obtain a copy of the Schedule and review carefully to ensure you understand the fees and are able to maximise the value of your package. For further information make an appointment to speak to us today.