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Aged Care. What you need to know

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Whether considering options for yourself, or deciding how best to help someone close to you, the journey into aged care can be a complex one. This guide explains the steps you need to take and where you can find answers.

Moving into aged care

There are typically three steps you need to take before moving in to an aged care facility.

STEP 1: Approval

Before entering an aged care facility, your health must be assessed to determine your eligibility for care. The assessment can be performed by any doctor, nurse or social worker who is a member of an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT, or ACAS in Victoria). You can visit to request an assessment.

STEP 2: Find a home

You can apply to as many homes as you like, so it’s worth looking around to find a home you are comfortable in that suits your needs. Visit to see descriptions of the rooms and services available at different aged care facilities, as well as accommodation costs.

STEP 3: Organise your finances

When you move into an aged care facility, you will need to pay an accommodation payment or contribution – which may be met in full or part by the Government. The Department of Human Services (DHS) will advise which applies to you based on an assessment of your assets and income. There will also be a basic daily fee, and there may be a means-tested care fee. Some facilities offer you a higher level of service, or a higher standard of accommodation or food, for an additional daily fee.

ACAT assessment

> Find a home

Consider what is important to you in a home and look around until you find it.

> Accommodation contribution

You pay part of the cost of your accommodation and the Government pays the rest.

> Accommodation payment

You pay for the full cost of your accommodation.

> Basic daily fee

Means-tested care fee

Additional daily fee


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