‍Can a Home Care Package pay for residential respite?

Unsure if you can use your home care funds for respite care? We break it down for you in this post.

Haisey Home Care
October 17, 2022
x min read

Respite enables your carer to take a break while ensuring that your care needs are still met. But are its costs met under the terms of your Home Care Package? This is a question we are often asked, and this article gives you all the information you need to know.

What is respite?

Respite is a temporary relief for carers if they need to take a break for whatever reason- holidays or appointments, for example. While they are usually booked in advance, they can also be needed in an emergency.

This respite may only be needed for a few hours, a few days, or maybe even longer.

It can be in your home, in your community (centre or cottage-based respite), or it can be in an aged care home- residential respite.

Can a Home Care Package pay for residential respite?

Yes. Your care package is there to cover anything that helps you live safely at home, and that includes temporary residential respite- assuming you have enough funds in your package.

How does residential respite work?

If you receive respite in a care home, you are allowed the same access to amenities and services as regular residents of the facility. This includes having your own room, being able to partake in hotel-like offerings like laundry and dining, as well as continued support for any personal or care needs you may have.

You will be assigned a respite classification based on your needs assessment and this will determine the level of respite subsidy your provider receives.

How much residential respite am I allowed?

Residential respite is available for up to 63 days of subsidised care in a financial year. This includes both planned and emergency residential respite care. There is the facility to extend this by 21 days at a time if you receive approval from your aged care assessment team.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is respite care free in Australia?

You will be asked to contribute an income-tested care fee according to the level of care you need. The Australian government will also pay a subsidy towards this, if you are applicable- including participants of the Home Care Programme.

What should I pack for respite?

You'll need to bring as many clothes as you will need for your stay and any medications you take. It's also good to take any books or magazines that will help you enjoy your stay, and even some photos to help you feel that little bit more at home.

What is the difference between a Home Care Package and CHSP?

The Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP) is an entry-level home support program that does not require an income assessment. You will need a formal assessment, however, which can be arranged through My Aged Care.

For the Home Care Package program, on the other hand, you will need to undergo an income assessment in order to determine if you are required to contribute towards the cost of your care.

CHSP is less flexible than a Home Care Package; it only provides specific individual services that you need. With a Home Care Package, however, you can book and change the type of services as well as purchase products using your package funds.

What can you spend your Home Care Package on?

Home Care Package funds can go towards a number of items and services that maintain your independence, both in the home and out in the community.

Examples of services include: housekeeping, running errands, meal preparation, social groups, and respite care.

Goods that Home Care Packages may be used for include: incontinence products,, tablets or phones to keep connected with others electronically, shower seats, wheelchairs or other mobility-assisting devices.

We hope this article has given you all the information you need.

Further information is available on the Aged Care website- My Aged Care: Respite Care- or you can contact us anytime; we're always happy to help!