Aged Care, what’s right for me?

Aging is a natural course of life and should be embraced. There are plenty of good things that come with age that we often brush aside; like the wisdom to know when someone has written a fluff piece, the character and fearlessness to know what’s right and wrong and the courage to stand up for your beliefs and ideally the freedom to enjoy your golden years.

So after years of caring for others, looking out for their best interests and ensuring they are happy and well, it’s time to put your hand up and say I might need just a little bit of help too. This can often be difficult for many to do, because we start to believe that’s the beginning of the slippery slope we don’t want to ride. When in fact, this can be the exact opposite.

Did you know, there are many options available to help you stay in your home for longer?

Home Care is helping almost 1 million Australians stay in their homes for longer. With services designed to help you maintain your independence and empowering you to continue making the decisions about the things that affect you in your life. Home Care is about making sure your safe, comfortable and well at home while you do you.

So what are the different options available and which one is right for you?

There are many different types of home support available. The option you choose will depend on the level of care you need, how long you need it for, and whether you want to rely on government-subsidised services, private services or help from your personal networks. The main options are:

  • basic or short-term support through the Commonwealth Home Support Program
  • more or longer-term support with a Home Care Package
  • private services

Commonwealth Home Support Program

The Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP) is good for people who need basic or short-term support, for example, when recovering from illness. CHSP is a government program that supports older people who are still managing well at home, but want some extra assistance, such as home help, delivered meals, personal care or home maintenance. The service is subsidised by government, but you have to pay some fees.

With the CHSP program, you choose from a pre-described list of services available. There isn’t much flexibility. As such you only pay for the services you use.

Before you can receive CHSP services, you need an assessment. The Regional Assessment Service (RAS) will visit you at home to assess what services you can use. Contact My Aged Care on 1800 200 422 for a referral to RAS.

If long-term assistance will be more beneficial, a Home Care Package may be better for you.

Home Care Packages

Home Care Packages provide long-term support for older people wanting to stay in their home for longer. With a Home Care Package there is flexibility in the service you receive. You have choice.

There are four different levels of care with a Home Care Package.

  • Level 1 for basic care needs
  • Level 2 for low-level care needs
  • Level 3 for intermediate care needs
  • Level 4 for high-level care needs

Your level of support will determine the number of hours of care and services are able to be delivered.

With a Home Care Package, you will be assigned a Case Manager from the provider you have chosen. They will help you to understand the system and work out a care plan that suits you and your needs. You will choose which services you will spend your allocated funding on and know once you have been approved for a Home Care Package it stays for the long-term.


If you’re in a position to, you might prefer to use private care services. Many companies and organisations offer fee-for-service home care. You don’t need an assessment and you can contact organisations directly to find out what they offer. You choose what services you want to purchase and are responsible for paying the costs.

Each care option gives you support to stay at home. But it is important that you understand the differences. If you need any assistance in making your decision or understanding your options or process please contact Lifebridge on 1800 043 186.