Home Care Services – Ministerial Response

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Original adjournment matter from Juliana Addison MP to Parliament –

I direct my adjournment matter to the Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers, and the action that I seek is for him to provide me with a detailed update on the waiting times for home care packages for the elderly in my electorate of Wendouree as well as Ballarat and the region of western Victoria.

Home care packages are very important to many people living in my community and their families because they allow for people to maintain their independence and age in place by accessing the support and services they need to stay in their own homes.

This is why I am interested to know what the waiting times are and what my constituents can expect in terms of time for the delivery of necessary services to get help around the home. I look forward to the minister’s response.

Response from the Hon Luke Donnellan MP, Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers (11th March 2020) –

Home care services for older people are funded and delivered by the Commonwealth Government through the Commonwealth Home Support Program and the Home Care Packages Program.

I share your concern about the waiting time for Home Care Packages because even people who are assessed as high priority and are at risk, are waiting many months to have their needs even partially met by the Commonwealth.

I understand there are over 120,000 people waiting for the level of package they were assessed for. This includes 75,000 who have not yet been offered any form of support. Of this over 22,000 are older Victorians.

This means there are almost as many Victorians assessed and waiting for a package than there are Victorians receiving a package.

According to the Commonwealth Government’s Home Care Packages Data report 4th Quarter 2018-19. The number of people waiting on a home care packaged at their approved level at 30 June 2019, who have yet to be offered a lower level package in the Grampians region is 937 older Victorians.

Home Care Packages and waiting times are matters for the Commonwealth Minister for Ageing and Senior Australians, the Hon Richard Colbeck MP. The Commonwealth Government is responsible for funding and delivery of home care packages and collection of data relating to waiting times.