The federal government moved towards increasing reliance on home care packages to keep elderly people at home for longer in February 2017.
A review of the home care package program for the 3 months to December 31 2017 provides some interesting data.
Home care package providers had risen in number to 806 (an increase of 5.2% in the quarter). 50,300 packages were allocated during the quarter taking the number of packages allocated since February 2017 to 130,751.
However at 31 December 2017 104,602 people were in the national queue for a package, of whom 46% had been assigned a temporary package – at a lower level than was desired (Level 2 but wanting Level 4).
Hardly surprising, Level 4 packages have the highest level of approval, and as more older people are kept in their homes rather than going to residential aged care, the demand at Level 4 can only increase.
A good sign is that more providers (nearly 38%) were not deducting an exit fee from customers leaving a particular service provider and those that did were reducing their fee (average $266).