Commonwealth Home Support Programme

Support at home is key to helping older people remain at home and in their community for longer.

From 1 July 2015, the Australian Government will launch the Commonwealth Home Support Programme, which is central to the aged care reforms, and will support the development of an end-to-end aged care system.

The existing Commonwealth HACC Program, the National Respite for Carers Program, the Day Therapy Centres Program and potentially the Assistance with Care and Housing for the Aged Program, will be combined under a single streamlined Commonwealth Home Support Programme to provide basic maintenance, care, support and respite services for older people living in the community, and their carers. Please see the ‘Overview of existing programs’ information sheet for further detail about the programs that will form part of the Commonwealth Home Support Programme.  This consolidation will create a nationally-consistent programme that continues to provide older Australians with the care they need in their own home and community, while being more efficient and easier to understand and administer.

Please see the ‘Key features from 1 July 2015’ information sheet which has further detail on the proposed design of the Commonwealth Home Support Programme.

Webinar

An interactive webinar was held on 26 June 2014 to provide an online presentation on the key design directions for the Commonwealth Home Support Programme. The webinar provided a further opportunity for those people who were unable to attend a face-to-face briefing to hear about the new programme.

Webinar participants were able to contribute to the conversation by sending their questions and comments using the Live Chat facility.

The on-demand version of the webinar is available.

Discussion Paper

The Key Directions for the Commonwealth Home Support Programme Discussion Paper (Discussion Paper) on the proposed design of the Commonwealth Home Support Programme was released for a six-week consultation process which closed on 30 June 2014. The Discussion Paper was informed by advice from a number of stakeholders, including the National Aged Care Alliance and its Home Support Advisory Group, and sets out the context and directions for the establishment of the Commonwealth Home Support Programme including:

  • strengths and challenges of the current home support system;
  • key directions and design elements for the new programme;
  • transition arrangements for activities no longer in scope; and
  • longer term considerations beyond 2015.

The Discussion Paper was aimed at seeking comment and feedback from consumers, providers, and workers on the key directions proposed for the programme. The Discussion Paper is still available on the Department’s website, but feedback on the paper is now closed.

Feedback received will inform the development of the Commonwealth Home Support Programme Manual, which is expected to be available later in 2014.

Service Reviews

To help develop the new Programme, the Department, in consultation with the Commonwealth Home Support Programme Advisory Group of the National Aged Care Alliance and its respective Sub Groups, undertook a number of reviews of HACC Service Types, including:

  • Service Group Two (Assessment, Client Care Coordination, Case Management, Counselling/Support, Information and Advocacy);
  • Service Group Five (Home Modifications, Home Maintenance, Goods & Equipment and Formal Linen Services);
  • Service Group Six (Meals);
  • Service Group Seven (Community Transport); and
  • Streamlining Respite (including other service groups).

The reviews generated a high level of interest and engagement from aged care service providers, peak bodies, consumers and carers from across the country. Over 10,000 stakeholders participated over the course of the reviews through a range of mechanisms, including focus groups and online questionnaires.

The final reports from Service Group Two, Service Group Five (home modifications and home maintenance), Service Group Six and Service Group Seven are now available.

In regards to the Streamlining Respite review, the National Aged Care Alliance made a number of recommendations in its paper ‘Provision of respite in the Commonwealth Home Support Program – Discussion Paper’.

A summary of the key findings and how they are proposed to be implemented under the Commonwealth Home Support Programme are also described in the Key Directions for the Commonwealth Home Support Programme Discussion Paper (Discussion Paper).

Frequently Asked Questions

Please see the Frequently Asked Questions to help with any questions you might have on the Commonwealth Home Support Programme.

If you have any further questions, please email them to the Home Support Policy Section at CHSP@dss.gov.au

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