Padstow Heights Retirement Community Provides Security | County Leader of St George and Sutherland

Plan ahead: Once you turn 65, know that there are many options for staying in your own home, regardless of your health. Photo: Shutterstock

As an elder, it’s wise to have a guide or map in place, not just for yourself, but for your family members as well. This is just in case there is a change in your well-being. For example, if you have a serious fall, it is certain that your situation will change temporarily or even permanently for you.

This guide is packed with tips to help you identify your situation, make a plan, and realize that things could change due to an unexpected illness.

Before you start your trip, you must be 65 or older to benefit from My Aged Care services.

You will need your Medicare card number to register either by phone or on the website. If applicable, prepare your list of medications.

1: Sign up for My Aged Care 1800 200 422 while you are well. It is advisable to register even if you don’t need help now – just say “no service required at this stage”. It is advisable to also register your representative and his health insurance number.

2: Once enrolled, and if your circumstances(s) change, call My Aged Care, inquire about your changes or those of your spouse or caregiver and that you would appreciate an assessment to discuss options (services, equipment installation , etc.) available to help you manage changes be experienced, but you still want/hope stay at home.

Remember that in addition to government-funded or subsidized programs, there are private providers (you pay the full cost), offering home, indoor and outdoor care.

To make sure you know the type of care you need, you can refer to this comprehensive list of definitions which includes:

Post-Acute Care (PAC) provides short-term community services and home therapy to help patients recover at home after leaving hospital. During this period, you can consider ongoing care, support, inquire about costs, etc. and organize the same.

Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP)– the Commonwealth program is the entry level for people over 65 who need basic assistance to live independently at home or in a unit in a village.

Consumer-centered care provides the ability to tell how the funds allocated to you through the HCP program are used.

Flexible care recognizes the range of needs of elderly care recipients who may require a different approach to care than that initially provided by ordinary residential or home care.

Transitional care is a short-term program between acute care or rehabilitation and returning home or the need for residential care for the elderly. In Bendigo, it is available at Golden Oaks.

Home Care Program (HCP) offers more complex, coordinated and personalized care at home. It offers 4 levels of care to progressively support people with basic, low, intermediate or high care needs and includes nursing and paramedic services.

Brokerage is the purchase of services from a service provider to meet the needs of the CHSP or HCP customer.

Respite Care is a short stay program of a few hours, a day, a weekend or a longer period in an EHPAD. Participating in one of these respite programs is a great way to transition into residential care.

Residential Elderly Care is provided in facilities for people unable to live independently in their own homes.

Most establishments offer three categories of rooms: standard, premium, superior or deluxe. Fees may vary depending on room category and property owner – government, non-profit, or private for-profit.

Advance care planning is a process of planning your health care for a time when you cannot make or communicate your decisions. Benefits include that people with PCA experience less anxiety, depression, stress, etc.

The Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016 came into force in March 2018. It provides and creates a legally binding Advanced Care Directive.

Ruth Hosking OAM, is a member of Council on Aging (COTA) Vic. “Trial Navigator Research” team. It reports monthly to the panel appointed by the government which collects the information.

This will allow the Department of Health and Aging to establish their proposal care connector service. Its agents list services in your area that meet your needs. There are plans for a care connector Office in each region of Australia.

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