6. Consumers’ 9 New Rights Under Consumer Directed Care (CDC)

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Consumer Directed Care (CDC) reforms began in the in home aged care industry on 1 July 2015 and became fully operational on 27 February 2017, and have given elderly Australians 9 really powerful new rights.

In our clients’ experience with other Approved Providers, Consumers have to be very knowledgeable of their rights and assertive to insist on their rights to actually receive true Consumer Directed Care (CDC) because many Old School Approved Providers are still delivering “Provider Directed Care”, not Consumer Directed Care.

Here are your 9 New Rights:

home care package packages consumer directed care cdc government funding subsidy funded hospital respite Home Care Package Packages CDC Consumer Directed Care

Elders have 9 NEW RIGHTS under Consumer Directed Care being the right to:

1. Choose your Approved Provider

2. Choose the type of care you need

3. Choose when you have your care

4. Choose who supplies the care

5.  Approved Providers have to operate with financial transparency and accountability

6. Choose the level of management of your Home Care Package that you want to exercise

7. Receive care focused on your goals

8. Receive care focused on your wellness and re-enablement

9. Be treated as an equal partner with no retribution

1) From 27 February 2017, you have the right to choose WHICH Approved Provider will receive and manage your Government Funded Home Care Package.

You now have greater control over how your Government Funding is spent, within the Government’s Home Care Package Guidelines.

It’s your money, not the Approved Provider’s money.

If you feel that your Current Approved Provider is not giving you good service or good value… then do your research and transfer your Government funding to an Approved Provider who does… like Daughterly Care Community Services.

Due to our 4 specialisations, Daughterly Care Community Services provides exceptional service and value for 4 groups of Elders:

1. private paying, self-funded Elders;

2. with high care needs i.e. Level 3 or 4 ACAT Approved Assessments;

3. living with a form of cognitive impairment or dementia; or

4. needing 24 hour care or Live in Care.

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Don’t take our word that we provide exceptional care, look at what our clients anonymously stated in our 2020 client survey.

2) To choose what TYPE of care you need.

Most seniors just need a little bit of assistance to start with and so only being offered care by the hour is fine. However, your aged care needs can increase… and decrease over time, so you need a Home Care Provider who provides a complete range of in home care services such as Registered Nurses, overnight care, 24 hour care, Live in Care and Palliative care to avoid unnecessary hospitalisations and unnecessary nursing home placement. And you’ll want a Home Care Approved Provider who is flexible and focused on what’s important to you. An organisation who LISTENS to you and understands you.

As your care needs increase and you reach that “tipping point” where you need around the clock care, you’ll want a Home Care Approved Provider who provides overnight care24 hour care or Live in Care when you need it, such as Daughterly Care Community Services, so you never need to go to a nursing home.

3) To choose WHEN you need your care

For example, what day, what time? No longer do you need to accept services at times that don’t suit you. No longer do you need to wait all day for help to shower.

4) To choose WHO supplies your care.

Now you can choose a premium private care Home Care Approved Provider such as Daughterly Care and if your Current Old School Approved Provider makes this difficult by saying we are not on their “Preferred Panel” or they charge unfair additional, often secret fees, such as 10-25% pa Third Party Processing Fees – you can just transfer your Government Funded Home Care Package to Daughterly Care Community Services as we are a new breed of Consumer Directed Care Approved Provider. We don’t charge any fees on Unspent Funds that transfer from your last Approved Provider.

TIP: If you are being denied your choice of Home Care Provider here is a 3 page summary of quotes from the Home Care Package Guidelines 2014 about your right to choice… Having choice is the whole reason for this important national aged care reform. Give this to your Approved Provider and tell them that you have the right to choose who provides your in home care and you want Daughterly Care.

5) To have financial transparency and accountability via a proposed budget and Monthly Statements sent to you. This new right is a GAME CHANGER.

In the past, ‘Home Care Package Recipients’ of Government Subsidised In Home Care Packages didn’t know:

1. how much the Government was paying for their in home care; or

2. what the Approved Provider was charging; nor

3. what their Unspent Funds were… so The Productivity Commission recommended these reforms.

The new transparency comes via:

1. the Proposed Budget and

2. the Monthly Home Care Package Statements which shines a spotlight on how your money is being spent so you can check you are receiving sufficient value and negotiate better outcomes.

If you feel that you are not receiving value, you have the right to negotiate better value or just transfer your Government Funded Home Care Package to an Approved Provider like Daughterly Care Community Services who offers quality Caregivers and Live in Carers.

The introduction of financial transparency is a massive and welcome reform.

The Proposed Budget and Monthly Home Care Package statements show:


  • The subsidy amount paid by the Government. The Government funding for the 4 different Home Care Package levels are on this page. Don’t forget to come back!
  • Supplements paid by the Government e.g. 11.5% supplement for dementia
  • The Basic Daily Care Fee (BDCF) set by the Government (paid by the consumer). From 1/7/2019 Daughterly Care does not charge the BDCF.
  • The Income Tested Care Fee (set by the Government) based on the Consumer’s Income Test and determined by the Human Services Department.
  • Voluntary Top Up Fees (private care paid by the consumer, NOT a Government requirement)


(Please note: Daughterly Care Community Services does not charge most of these fees, but this is what I have seen charged when auditing thousands of Monthly Home Care Package Statements over the last 3 years)

Common fees Kate has discovered when auditing thousands of statements over the last 3 years Does Daughterly Care charge these Home Care Package Fees?
1. Intensive Support Home Care Package Set Up Fee No. In 24 years we have never charged a set up fee.

The Government always made it clear that set up fees were not allowed to be paid by the Home Care Package.

2. Administration fees Included in our Home Care Package Management Fee
3. Core Advisory fees No
4. Case Management fees Included in our Home Care Package Management Fee
5. Third party supplier fees (commonly 10% to 25% added onto the cost of all third party suppliers of care, or other services or equipment^) 10%
6. 10% GST incorrectly charged care No
7. Monthly Compliance Fee No
8. Quarterly Review Fee No
9. Annual Review Fee No
 10. Registered Nurse Case Management or review fees No, however your Home Care Package pays for RN clinical care when needed
 11. Contingency fee or “Safety Net Fee” No
 12. Exit Fee No, from 1/7/2019.



What matters is how much of the Government funding or Home Care Package Income is left for your in home care support and assistance.

Costs are explained in more detail section 4

Receiving monthly financial statements means you can ask your Case Manager … “How can I get better value? How can I get more hours of care to maximise my Mum’s / Dad’s chance of staying at home for life?”

Consumers with high care needs, i.e. receiving Level 3 and Level 4 Home Care Packages who don’t want to go into a nursing home have the greatest need to reduce fees to a fair level and at the same time increase the quality of their in home Caregivers or Live in Carers as this will improve your chances of staying at home for life.

When an Elder reaches that tipping point of needing 24 hour care or around the clock care they will want the option of Live in Care because it’s less than half the price of 24 hour care and it’s the Gold Star of aged care.

6) The right to choose what level of management the consumer (or their representative, Enduring Guardian or family) would like.

3.1.3 Level of consumer control over the management of the Home Care Package.

“As part of the care planning process, the consumer must be asked about, and given the option of, exercising different levels of control over the management of the package.”

Source: Home Care Package Guidelines 2014

TIP: If you are one of the many consumers, who wasn’t asked how involved you wanted to be in the management of your Home Care Package then re-contact your Approved Provider and ask to discuss this. Here is a PDF from the Government Guidelines stating you must be asked how involved you want to be. We have negotiated reductions and refunds of Case Management Fees where Approved Providers failed to ask this question, because it is a breach of the guidelines.

7) The right for care to focus on your goals.

The Consumer Directed Care Home Care Package Guidelines made it compulsory to ask Elders what’s important to you? What goal are you wanting to achieve with your Government funded care? Your Care Plan documents your goals and steps to achieve your goals.

8) The right to focus on wellness.

In home care isn’t just about doing tasks for elderly Australians, it’s about re-enabling Elders after a health crisis and supporting them back to their previous good health. It’s also about enabling Elders to be healthier and happier. Dr Maria Montessori, Italy’s first female doctor famously said, “what we do for people we steal from them.” So when we talk to you about the goals for your care… one of our questions will be “how can we work together to improve your wellness?”

9) Equal Partners. No retribution.

Many Elders and their families are afraid to speak up for their rights when receiving Government Funded Home Care Package services. You don’t have to be afraid, you cannot be discriminated against just because you stand up for your rights and for what is rightfully yours.  From 27th February 2017, it’s your money (not the Approved Provider’s money) it’s your care, to live your life, your way and you control how the money is spent, subject to the Home Care Package Program Guidelines now. All power to you!

Negotiation tips to gain your rights

Prior to 27 February 2017, our clients’ experience was very “hit and miss”. Some Approved Providers are absolutely brilliant and really “get” Consumer Directed Care and are a total joy to deal with. Other Approved Providers, based on my clients’ experiences when they were a client of other Approved Providers, well they act in ways that are the complete opposite to Consumer Directed Care and you wonder how they will stay in business now that the Home Care Packages are not allocated directly to them by the Government… now that the consumer chooses their Approved Provider based on service and value.

Here’s just some of what we have seen that was not Consumer Directed Care:

  • They don’t offer choice of Care Provider.
  • They flat out deny clients of their choice of Care Provider.
  • They charged a whole year’s case management fees to a 96 year old client in the first 3 months of his home care package, during which time he received no care!! That’s not ethical or caring.
  • They lie to clients telling them they “have to pay a contingency” fee. No you don’t, the Government Guidelines say “the contingency fee is not required”.
  • They triple charged for the same service such that you end up paying 49% pa of all your Government funding and consumer contributions to them in fees before one dollar of care is provided. One Rogue Approved Provider charges an Annual Case Management Fee plus an Annual Core Advisory Fee plus charges by the hour for “case managing the client”. Plus charged for Registered Nurse visits that didn’t occur. Plus charged a quarterly review fee plus an annual review fee!!!
  • They MISQUOTE the Home Care Packages Guidelines to the elderly consumer. They were written by the Government for the Approved Providers to abide by. They were also written for Consumers to read.
  • They systematically over charge clients, charging for GST, when in home care, personal care, respite care is GST exempt and anything paid for by your Home Care Package is GST free.
  • They don’t disclose all the fees they charge in breach of the Guidelines.
  • They embed their own “secret undisclosed fee” into the care provider’s fee. This artificially inflates / overstates the care provider’s fee. Daughterly Care has discovered 10 Approved Providers who inflate the cost of care by artificially increasing our fee by their own undisclosed handling fee. One faith-based, not-for-profit increased our Live in Care fee by $100 per day. Another increased our fee by 10% pa. Another increased our fee by 5% pa and another increased our fee by 20% pa. This serves the purpose of artificially and falsely increasing our fee making us look less competitive than we are. It also makes the Rogue Approved Provider look cheaper than they are. Their fees should be in their “Expenses” section on the statement, not hidden in the supplier’s fee.