Terms & Definitions

Learn the common term definitions mentioned throughout our website and publications.

  • 24 / 7 Emergency Call System

    Facilities or retirement villages that offer an emergency call system 24 hours a day, 7 days per week, for the safety of residents.

  • 24 / 7 Monitored Supervision

    Electronic call bell or intercom system which enables a resident to request assistance from a staff member.

  • 24 / 7 Personal Care and Support

    Personal care and support including assistance with personal hygiene, washing, showering, bathing, and dressing offered 24 hours a day, 7 days per week.

  • 24 / 7 Registered Nursing

    This is care carried out by qualified, professional registered nurses to ensure residents’ comfort, health and safety is looked after – day and night.

  • 24 / 7 Supervisor(s)

    Qualified personal care staff or registered nurse on duty throughout a 24-hour period, actively supervising residents' needs.

  • ACAT Assessment

    The ACAT carries out an assessment of an older person's care needs (usually in the person's home or in hospital) and to discuss what services are needed and available in the person's area. If ACAT approves the person receiving high or low level care then ACFI funding applies and the Commonwealth pays a fair proportion of the daily care fee's

  • Accommodation bond

    An amount payable on entry to a low level care aged care home or for an extra service place (for low and high level care). Service providers must use the income derived from accommodation bonds to improve their building standards and the quality and range of the services they offer.

  • Accommodation charge

    A daily charge, in addition to daily care fees, which may be payable on entry to a high level care home. It is a contribution by residents to their accommodation costs.

  • Accreditation

    Accreditation is granted to residential aged care homes that comply with the Accreditation Standards under the Aged Care Act 1997. They are required to meet four standards and 53 outcomes for quality of care and quality of life in their provision of residential care. Residential aged care services must be accredited by the Aged Care Standards & Accreditation Agency to receive Government funding.

  • Aged Care Assessment Service (ACAS)

    For Victoria only, all other states - please see ACAT. The Aged Care Assessment Service (ACAS) helps the elderly and their carers determine what kind of care will best meet their needs when they are no longer able to manage. The team, often comprising a doctor, nurse, social worker and occupational therapist, will ask the client a series of questions to determine the best care options available. See also ACAT

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  • Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT)

    Aged Care Assessment Teams (ACATs) helps the elderly and their carers determine what kind of care will best meet their needs when they are no longer able to manage. The team, often comprising a doctor, nurse, social worker and occupational therapist, will ask the client a series of questions to determine the best care options available. See also ACAT

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  • Aged Care Facility

    Aged care facilities are homes owned and run by people who are approved by the Australian Government to care for you when you feel you can no longer live independently at home.

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  • Aged Care Funding Instrument (ACFI)

    ACFI was introduced on March 2008 as a means of allocating Australian Government subsidy to residential aged care providers.

  • Aged Care On-Site

    The retirement village has a residential aged care facility at the same location.

  • Ageing in Place

    Provided by some aged care homes for residents to be admitted for low-level care, who are not required to move to another facility when their care needs become higher-level.

  • Assisted & Supported Living

    May offer a similar service to that of a Commonwealth funded high or low level care facility but are privately funded. Assisted & Supported Living sites are state registered service providers.

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  • Booked Respite Program

    These facilities have at least one specific bed allocated to respite and eligible people can contact the facility to book respite in that bed in advance. A booking diary operates.

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  • Broker

    A Broker is a consultant who assists people understand aged care and helps them find the right service to fit their needs. Brokers may also be Case Managers or Placement Consultants

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  • Care Plan

    A care plan is developed by the service providing your care and outlines your care needs and instructions on how your care needs will be met.

  • Centre Based Care

    Centre Based Day Care is for older people who require low to medium living support in a comfortable setting out of home.

  • Coded Keypad Entry / Exit

    May exist on a secure dementia wing or facility to ensure only those who know a code can enter or exit a facility, ensuring the safety of residents.

  • Communal Facilities

    A range of amenities and services for residents, which may include such things as a community hall, bowling green, swimming pool, barbecue area or recreation centre.

  • Community Care Packages

    Please see 'Home Care Packages (HCP) Levels 1 - 4'

  • Complementary Therapists

    Can include masseuses/masseurs, aromatherapists, manicurists.

  • Consider Partner without ACAT

    These Residential Facilities allow the partner of a resident to live with them in the facility. This is usually in an unfunded bed and the partner will need to enter into a private payment arrangement with the facility.

  • Consumer Directed Care Packages

    Align with the existing CACP, EACH and EACHD packages but give older people greater control over the design and delivery of community care services.

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  • Couples Accommodation

    The facility has double or interconnected rooms, specifically designed or able to be converted for use by couples requiring residential care.

  • Couples Rooms

    Some aged care facilities have accommodation for ‘couples’ who wish to remain living together, meaning they won’t need to be separated in different facilities or rooms.

  • Cultural Environment

    This indicates that the majority of the facility's residents are from one or more ethnic groups or the facility caters specifically for people who are from one or more ethnic groups. Particular dietary requirements may be met, and ethnic traditions observed.

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  • Culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD)

    CALD is the acronym for 'culturally and linguistically diverse'. There are some aged care facilities which are CALD specific.

    Additional information ›

  • Daily Accommodation Payment (DAP)

    This is a daily payment paid periodically ie monthly. This is not a refundable payment.

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  • Day Therapy Centres

    Offer a range of therapy services for older people living independently in the community or in aged care homes. Services may include physiotherapy, occupational and speech therapy or podiatry.

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  • Dementia Supplement

    Home Care Packages classified as being specifically for clients with dementia. Also a term used in residential facilities ie; beds that are specifically for residents with dementia.

    Additional information ›

  • Dietitians & Nutritionists

    Specialists who assess an individual's needs for healthy eating and nutrition.

  • Diversional Therapists

    Individuals who provide alternative focus to residents, usually in a group setting, including theme days (eg celebration of Christmas), music hours, card games.

  • Diversional Therapy Program

    These facilities provide and organise chosen leisure and recreational activities as a form of therapy, which are designed to support and enhance the life of the residents, maximising their independence.

  • Domestic Assistance

    Assistance with everyday household tasks such as dishwashing, house cleaning, clothes washing, shopping and paying bills.

  • Donor Funded

    These villages include an element of charitable subsidy and possibly an entry contribution.

  • Double Rooms

    Form of aged care accommodation where a room is shared by two residents.

  • DPS

    DPS Publishing is the registered company name. Most commonly referred to as just DPS. Many years ago the company was named Davids Publishing Services. This was subsequently changed to the acronym DPS.

  • Ethnicity Specific

    This indicates that the majority of the facility's residents are from one or more ethnic groups or the facility caters specifically for people who are from one or more ethnic groups. Particular dietary requirements may be met, and ethnic traditions observed.

    Additional information ›

  • Exercise Therapists

    Trained in the principles of rehabilitation, how pain works and the role of exercise in body repair. Tailor a program for specific needs.

  • Extra service Beds

    Extra service aged care homes receive approval from the Commonwealth Government to offer a higher standard of accommodation, food and services for an additional charge ("hotel-type services"). The term 'Extra Service' only refers to the standard of accommodation, meals, food and entertainment and not to the level of care. It may be provided throughout the home or within a specific wing or section of the home. An accommodation bond applies to both high and low level care at Extra Services homes.

  • Facility Pets

    The facility has its own dog, cat, birds or other pets on site for the benefit of residents.

  • Facility Transport

    The facility has its own transport such as a bus and driver for the use and benefit of residents.

  • Financially Disadvantaged

    Home Care Packages classified as being for clients who are assessed as being financially disadvantaged.

  • Flexible care

    Flexible aged care places are provided through a number of different programs as an alternative to more traditional community and residential care. Five types of flexible care are provided – Extended Aged Care at Home (EACH) and Extended Aged Care at Home Dementia (EACHD) packages, Transition Care, Multi-Purpose Service (MPS) places, and Innovative Care.

  • Full Domestic Service

    Can include cooking, cleaning, laundering clothing and linen, shopping, paying bills.

  • Funded Aged Care Facilities

    This is where the Australian Government regulates and partly funds the provision of aged care for frail older people who are unable to continue living independently at home.

  • Gardening & Maintenance

    Assistance with minor works in clients' homes and gardens.

  • General Dementia Beds

    These facilities have residential care areas that cater for residents with dementia or similar behavioural related conditions in an environment that is not a secure dementia specific unit or wing.

  • General Packages

    Non-specific classification for Home Care Packages.

  • HACC Funded Service

    A home care service funded by the Home and Community Care government initiative

  • Health Professionals

    Can include dentists, dietitians, exercise therapists, medical practitioners, nutritionists, occupational therapists, opticians, podiatrists, physiotherapists and speech therapists.

  • High Care Nursing Homes

    A nursing home is a residential aged care facilty offering high level care for people who require a lot of assistance with activities of daily living such as feeding, dressing, cleaning and mobility. Previously known as 'nursing home care', High care is provided for ACAT assessed people who require almost complete assistance with most daily living activities. It includes accommodation, meals, laundry, room cleaning and personal care. Nursing staff at the aged care home manage the medical needs.

    Additional information ›

  • Home Care Packages (HCP) Level 1

    Funded by the Australian Government, Home Care Packages Level 1 support people with basic care needs. They are individually planned and coordinated to help older people to remain living in their own homes. Included is the Dementia Supplement for people with dementia and the Veterans’ Supplement for veterans with an accepted mental health condition.

    Additional information ›

  • Home Care Packages (HCP) Level 2

    Funded by the Australian Government, Home Care Packages Level 2 support people with low care needs. They are individually planned and coordinated to help older people to remain living in their own homes. Included is the Dementia Supplement for people with dementia and the Veterans’ Supplement for veterans with an accepted mental health condition.

    Additional information ›

  • Home Care Packages (HCP) Level 3

    Funded by the Australian Government, Home Care Packages Level 3 support people with intermediate care needs. They are individually planned and coordinated to help older people to remain living in their own homes. Included is the Dementia Supplement for people with dementia and the Veterans’ Supplement for veterans with an accepted mental health condition.

    Additional information ›

  • Home Care Packages (HCP) Level 4

    Funded by the Australian Government, Home Care Packages Level 4 support people with high care needs. They are individually planned and coordinated to help older people to remain living in their own homes. Included is the Dementia Supplement for people with dementia and the Veterans’ Supplement for veterans with an accepted mental health condition.

    Additional information ›

  • Home Care Packages (HCP) Levels 1 - 4

    There are four levels of packages which are funded by the Australian Government. All care packages are individually planned and coordinated to help older people to remain living in their own homes. Each level includes the Dementia Supplement for people with dementia and the Veterans’ Supplement for veterans with an accepted mental health condition. Level 1 supports people with basic care needs. Level 2 supports people with low care needs (formerly Community Aged Care Packages). Level 3 supports people with intermediate care needs. Level 4 supports people with high care needs (formerly Extended Aged Care at Home and Extended Aged Care at Home Dementia packages).

    Additional information ›

  • Housing Linked

    Specifically for clients classified as homeless or in danger of becoming homeless.

  • In Home Care Services

    Health care or supportive care provided in the patient's home by healthcare professionals (often referred to as home health care or formal care). Often, the term home care is used to distinguish non-medical care or custodial care, which is care that is provided by persons who are not nurses, doctors, or other licensed medical personnel, as opposed to home health care that is provided by licensed personnel.

    Additional information ›

  • Independent Living Units (ILU's)

    Independent living units, also sometimes referred to as villas, offer one, two or three bedroom accommodation, in a village environment, for older people who are actively independent and able to care for themselves.

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  • Inspect on Request

    The facility is able to allow potential residents and their families to inspect the site and rooms when they make a formal request or appointment.

  • LGBTI

    This is the acronym for 'lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex'.

    Additional information ›

  • License to Occupy

    A form of retirement living tenure that gives residents the right to occupy a residence without having ownership of it.

  • Low Care Admissions

    Residents who are assessed as requiring low care are accepted for admission in some facilities

  • Low Care Nursing Homes

    Previously known as 'hostel care', this is provided for ACAT (or ACAS for Vic only) assessed people who require accommodation, meals, laundry, room cleaning as well as help with personal care and possibly nursing care.

  • Meals & Shopping

    Delivery of daily cooked or frozen ready-to-eat meals or transport to the shops and assistance provided or having someone to do the shopping.

  • Medical Practitioners

    Usually referred to as Doctors. Involves making diagnoses and prescribing treatment for medical conditions.

  • Medication Management

    Attend the home daily to assist in dispensing medication.

  • Medication Supervision

    Attend the home daily to assist in supervising or prompting client to take medication.

  • Minimum Age Considered

    The facility has a policy of taking younger adults but their is a minimum age that they will consider. Some facilities can only accommodate people in their middle years ie; 40 to 60 yrs of age whilst other facilities cater to the much younger adult over the age of 18yrs

  • Multi Storey Building

    The residential facility has residents rooms over more than one floor. This includes split level hillside sites.

  • NESB

    This is the acronym for 'non-english speaking background'.

    Additional information ›

  • Non Secure Dementia Care

    Facilities that offer care for people with dementia or similar behavioural related conditions, but do not have a fully secure dementia care unit or wing.

  • Non-dedicated Respite

    Some residential aged care facilities do not offer dedicated rooms for respite for carers, or the person being cared for, to ‘take a break’ or ‘rest’. This is called non-dedicated respite.

  • Non-funded aged care facilities

    There are a number of non government funded residential aged care facilities ie supported or assisted living complexes, independent living units and serviced apartments. These do not generally require approval by an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) prior to a person entering the home.

  • NRCP Funded Service

    A service funded by the National Respite for Carers Program, specifically for relatives and friends caring at home for people who are unable to care for themselves because of disability or frailty.

  • Nursing & Palliative Care

    Registered or Enrolled Nurses visiting the home to assist with medication, wound management, convalescent care, pain management and palliative care.

  • Occupational Therapists

    Focus on enabling people to live satisfying and meaningful lives including self-care (bathing, dressing, grooming, toileting, feeding), household (cooking, cleaning, shopping), community involvement and leisure/ recreation pursuits.

  • On-Site Restaurant

    Restaurant facilities are located within the grounds of a facility or retirement village complex.

  • Open Day

    The facility organises groups of potential residents to view the site on a particular day of the week or month.

  • Packages

    A package normally means something boxed up or parceled such as a Christmas package. In aged care terminology it means all of the care services and products required to assist someone at home. For example a package of care might include domestic cleaning services twice a week, monitored alarm and transport services to and from the local Day Therapy Centre.

    Additional information ›

  • Palliative Care Program

    The facility provides palliative care and actively encourages enquiries from people who require palliative care. The palliative care program provides pain relief, management of symptons, counselling and support to ensure the best possible quality of life for the resident.

  • Palliative Care RN

    The facility has a dedicated Palliative Care Registered Nurse (RN) on staff who is fully trained in the provision of palliative care and fully aware of end of life issues and needs.

  • Personal Care

    Assistance with personal hygiene, washing, showering, bathing, dressing, feeding and toileting.

  • Pharmaceutical Deliveries

    Medications delivered to homes by pharmacies.

  • Physiotherapists

    Health professionals who assess a patient’s condition to find the underlying causes of pain, in joints, muscles or nerves. They advise on ways to manage the condition and show them how further pain and injury can be prevented.

  • Placement Consultants

    Professional fee-for service assistance to find the care option that best suits a client's needs. Consultant will rganise all of the relevant paperwork and arrangements necessary to secure a placement in either a community care program or residential aged care facility. Sometimes referred to as a Broker

    Additional information ›

  • Podiatrists

    Professionals who deal with the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of medical and surgical conditions of the feet and lower limbs.

  • Purchase

    There are various forms of occupation or ownership rights for retirement living. These are referred to as 'tenure'. Some forms of tenure include strata title ownership, leasehold estates and licences to occupy.

  • RAD/DAP Combination

    This includes both partial lump sum and daily payments.

    Additional information ›

  • Refundable Accommodation Deposit (RAD)

    This is paid as a lump sum when entering an aged care home and refunded in full when leaving the home.

    Additional information ›

  • Registered Nurses

    Senior nurses who care for the sick and injured in hospitals and other health care facilities, doctors’ surgeries, and private homes.

  • Rehabilitation Program

    The facility has a rehabilitation program or service and actively encourages enquiries from people requiring rehabiliation such as post acute for things such as strokes or joint replacements

  • Rental (with no upfront cost)

    No bond required. Periodical rental payments only for villas, units or Independent Living Units.

  • Rental Units (Rental Accommodation)

    Villas, units or Independent Living Units available for rent. This type of accommodation is generally for older people who are on a pension and do not own property.

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  • Resident Agreement

    A resident agreement is a legal agreement between you and the aged care home and sets out a resident's rights and obligations, and the rights and obligations of the aged care home. The agreement should include information about the type of care needed, the circumstances in which the resident may be asked to leave the home, the amount of the accommodation bond or charge and daily fees and, if entering an extra service home, the extra services provided and associated costs.

  • Resident Funded

    Any Unit, Villa or Apartment in a Retirement Village available for purchase or via a deposit or entry contribution

  • Resident Pets Considered

    These facilities may be able to accommodate residents pets within the facility depending on the pet breed, size, or needs.

  • Residential Aged Care

    Residential aged care is for older people who can no longer live at home. Reasons can include illness, disability, bereavement, an emergency, the needs of their carer, family or friends, or because it is no longer possible to manage at home without help.

    Additional information ›

  • Respite Care

    These services are designed to give carers a break from their caring role and can be arranged for planned breaks, regular weekly breaks, short holidays or emergencies. Services are available within the person's home, in a day care centre or in a residential care facility.

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  • Respite Program

    These facilities have at least one specific bed allocated to respite and eligible people can contact the facility to book respite in that bed in advance. A booking diary operates.

  • Retirement Home / Village

    A retirement home is a multi-residence housing facility intended for senior citizens, 55 years and over. Typically each person or couple in the home has an apartment-style room or suite of rooms. Additional facilities can be provided within the building, including enhanced supervision, more company, communal facilities or small pets allowed by residents.

  • Rooms with Ensuites

    There are private rooms available with ensuite bathroom facilities that may service one or two rooms.

  • Rural & Remote

    Home Care Packages classified as being specifically for those in rural or remote areas.

  • Secure Dementia Care

    These facilities have a fully secure dementia care unit or wing exclusively and specifically for people with dementia or similar behavioural related conditions.

  • Secure Garden

    The facility has a secure fenced garden area specifically designed for people with dementia and generally attached to the secure dementia unit.

  • Service Fee

    Periodical fee paid by owners usually of ILU’s/Villas for general maintenance.

    Additional information ›

  • Serviced Apartments

    A Unit or Apartment for people who wish to live in a supported environment with services such as laundering, meals and cleaning provided on a fee for service basis.

  • Single Rooms

    Form of aged care accommodation where a room is occupied by only one resident.

  • Small Pets Welcome

    The village has a policy for residents enabling them to have small pets but depends on the type, size and needs.

  • Social & Recreational Support

    Generally involves the older person attending social or recreational events and services outside of the home at a community, day or recreational centre.

  • Social Workers

    Professionals who link service users with agencies and programs that will meet their clients’ psychosocial needs, provide counselling and psychotherapy in various fields including social and community development, hospital and aged care.

  • Socially Disadvantaged

    Home Care Packages classified as being for clients who are assessed as being socially disadvantaged.

  • Specialist Services

    The facility offers other specialist services for example snozelen therapy, eden alternative or other.

  • Speech Therapists

    Professionals who evaluate, diagnose, and treat difficulties involving speech, language, voice, fluency, and swallowing. The difficulties speech therapists treat can be caused by neurological disorders, developmental disabilities, learning disabilities, physical problems, voice pathology, hearing impairments, or emotional disorders.

  • Supported Living

    Independent units, apartments or bedsitters within a community where support services are provided. These suppport services may be meals, cleaning, cooking, personal care or other assistance as required.

  • Supported Residential Facility (SRF)

    An SRF may offer a similar service to that of a Commonwealth funded high or low level care facility but without the funding support. SRF's are state registered service providers.

    Additional information ›

  • Supported Residential Services (SRS)

    An SRS may offer a similar service to that of a Commonwealth funded high or low level care facility but without the funding support. SRS's are state registered service providers.

    Additional information ›

  • Total funded beds

    The total number of beds available, ranging from low to high care.

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  • Total Non Funded Beds

    These are beds which may be offered in Supported Living or Supported Residential Services, and are not funded by the Australian Government under the Aged Care Funding Instrument.

    Additional information ›

  • Transition Care

    Transition care provides short term support for older people after a hospital stay and can be delivered in either a residential or community setting. It is designed to optimise independence of older people to enables them to return home rather than enter residential care.

    Additional information ›

  • Transitional Care Beds

    These residential aged care facilities provides interim care to older people with care needs who are in the transition between acute hospital care and living back in their home.

  • Transport

    Organising or providing transport services such as bus, taxi, private car etc.

  • Tube Feeding

    The staff at the residential aged care facility have the specialist knowledge to meet the needs of people who are fed via a nasogastric or PEG tube. Most high level care facilities offer this service and a few low level care facilities

  • Veteran Supplement

    Home Care Packages for eligible veterans, war widows or widowers, through the Department of Veterans' Affairs.

  • Villas / ILUs

    Villas are designed for the active retiree and are sometimes referred to as Independent Living Units (ILUs).

  • Younger Adults

    The residential aged care facility can meet the special needs of younger people who require nursing home or hostel level care due to brain injury or other debilitating condition.

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