9. Should Self Funded Seniors accept a Level 2 Home Care Package?

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You are a self-funded senior who has been approved for a Level 4 Home Care Package but only assigned (offered) a Level 2 Home Care Package, should you accept the Level 2 Home Care Package or just wait for a Level 3 or 4 Home Care Package? This is one of the most frequently asked questions we are asked by self-funded Elders. Let’s explore the different factors to consider so you can make the decision that is right for you.

Should Self-Funded Seniors accept a Level 2 Government Funded Home Care Package?

Self-funded Elders will be given various answers to this question depending on who they are talking to and what assumptions have been made.  Advice will range from:

  • “it is cheaper just to go private”; to
  • “definitely accept the Level 2”.

The right answer for you depends on your circumstances, so let’s do the maths together for Daughterly Care clients because we have made some changes recently to make a Level 2 Home Care Package more financially rewarding for a self-funded senior.   We will also explore the factors that can affect your decision.

Is there a financial benefit from a Level 2 Home Care Package for self-funded seniors?

Quick answer: with Daughterly Care Community Services it IS worth accepting a Level 2 Home Care Package and if a couple has 2 Home Care Packages, we can make it worth your while even more.

Quick re-cap of the rules for self-funded seniors.

  • Approved Providers like Daughterly Care can now waive the Maximum Basic Daily Care Fee. Whilst this fee is set by the Government, the Government has given Approved Providers the right to reduce or waive this fee.
  • Approved Providers like Daughterly Care CANNOT waive or reduce the Income Tested Care Fee. Further, the Government has stated it is NOT possible to avoid the Income Tested Care Fee in return for a lower Home Care Package.

Level 2 Home Care Package financial viability for a self-funded Elder (correct from 20/3/2019 to 30/6/2019)

Assumptions:

  • fully self-funded senior;
  • not entitled to a cognitive or DVA 11.5% supplement; and
  • Daughterly Care does NOT charge the Maximum Basic Daily Care
Annual Level 2 Home Care Package Government Funding $15,045.30 pa
Less: Government doesn’t pay an amount equal to the Income Tested Care Fee for self-funded senior (- $11,012.99 pa)
Equals: the Real Annual Level 2 Home Care Package funding for a self-funded Senior = $4,032.31 pa
So, the Real Government Funding for a self-funded elder, with a Level 2 Home Care Package is worth $11.04 per day ($11.04 X 365 = $4,032.31pa) or $4,032.31 a year.

However, you need to deduct any additional fee charged by your Approved Provider for administering the Government’s Home Care Package Program and case managing care.

So in Daughterly Care’s case that is 20%pa of the Home Care Package i.e. $15,045.30 X 20% = $3,009.06pa

So, the true financial benefit from the Government after all costs is $4,032.31 – $3,009.06 = $1,023.25pa

So, the amount available to spend on care or services is:
$15,045.30 – $3,009.06 = $12,036.24
divided by 52 weeks = $231.46 per week.

So, your Government Subsidised Level 2 Home Care Package through Daughterly Care will provide $231.46 per week of care.

For that benefit of $12,036.24 you have paid $11,012.99 annual Income Tested Care Fee / 52 weeks = $211.79.  (The Income Tested Care fee is calculated daily and charged monthly and is $30.25 per day).

So, it has cost the self-funded elder $211.79 per week to receive a benefit worth $231.46….yes, I agree….for Self-Funded Seniors, it is barely worth accepting a Level 2 Home Care Package –  i.e. you are only $19.67 a week better off financially.

Now you can understand why if a Senior just wanted ad hoc assistance from time to time we advised against accepting a Level 2 Home Care Package.

Other factors

What we don’t know is this…is accepting the Level 2 Home Care Package given a heavier weighting by the Government’s Home Care Package Allocation Algorithm and therefore means you are more likely to receive your Level 3 or 4 Home Care Packager quicker than if you didn’t accept the Level 2 Home Care Package?  We have seen that happen numerous times, though it may have been a co-incidence and we can’t prove it.

What about the Lifetime Cap for the Income Tested Care Fee?

If you needed 3.5 hours of care every week, which is what your Level 2 Home Care Package pays for then you would have bought private care more than to the Income Tested Care Fee and not reduced your Annual or Lifetime Caps.

So, by accepting the Level 2 Home Care Package…you are $19.67 better off a week and you are reducing your Lifetime Cap. When you reach your Lifetime Cap – you stop paying the Income Tested Care Fee, which is a saving of $11,012.94 pa. It takes 6 years to reach your Lifetime Cap.

Whereas if a self-funded client bought private in-home care for 2 years whilst waiting to be assigned their Level 3 or Level 4 Home Care Package, because they have paid privately, they will not have reduced their Income Tested Care Fee Annual Cap at all.

What Happens to your Unspent Funds?

If you don’t use your budget each week, it “banks up” for when you most need it.  You don’t lose banked or unspent funds. If you move into a Nursing Home or pass away your unspent money is returned to:

  1. the Government, in the proportion they contributed to your Home Care Package; and
  2. you or your estate, in the proportion that you contributed to your Home Care Package.

Your unspent funds roll forward for your use, whilst ever you are living at home and on a Home Care Package.

The Definitive Guide to Government Funded Consumer Directed In Home Aged Care Packages

1. What is a Consumer Directed Care (CDC) in Home Care Package?

2. How many hours of support or care can I receive for my Home Care Package?

3. What can a Government Subsidised Home Care Package pay for?

4. What are the costs of a Consumer Directed Care (CDC) Home Care Package?

5. What is Consumer Directed Care (CDC)?

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

7. How do you apply for a Government Subsidised Home Care Package?

8. Are you approved or assigned a Government Funded Home Care Package?

9. Should Self-Funded Seniors accept a Level 2 Home Care Package? Current Page

10. Should a Pensioner accept a Level 1 or 2 Home Care Package?

11. How do I start my Home Care Package?

12. How do I transfer my Home Care Package to Daughterly Care Community Services?

13. How do I know if the Home Care Package fees I’m being charged are fair?

14. How will Consumer Directed Care (CDC) benefit my loved one?

15. Is Consumer Directed Care (CDC) working?

16. Will Consumer Directed Care (CDC) make it easier for my loved one to stay at home?

17. Frequently asked questions about Consumer Directed Care (CDC) Home Care Packages

Discover the secret to getting more out of your Consumer Directed Care (CDC) Home Care Package!

Do you have a question that isn’t answered here or just looking for more information? Browse our FAQs.

Need more information? To know more about us, read why we started Daughterly Care and take a look at our services.

Meet the stars of our business, our in home carers and case managers and operations team.

Read unsolicited feedback from our in home care clients. We’re always thrilled to receive such kind words.

Contact us for a confidential chat about your in-home care needs or to organise your free no obligation consultation by emailing: claireg@daughterlycare.com.au or ring us on (02) 9970 7333.