- You can nominate for someone you trust to make decisions about aged care services on your behalf
- There are two types of representatives on My Aged Care
- You can change a representative on your profile at any time as long as you have decision making capacity
Accessing aged care or organising personal matters can be complicated, time consuming and very stressful, especially if you are starting to become ill or are starting to lose capacity to make decisions.
You may instead decide to appoint a trusted person to be your representative for your interactions with My Aged Care.
This could be your partner, a family member, close friend, or carer.
Of course, if you have capacity, you still get to decide how much power your representative has over your affairs.
The aged care portal, My Aged Care, allows for older people to appoint a representative to deal with aged care matters on their behalf.
Their duties can include:
- Keeping information up to date on your My Aged Care portal
- Communicating on your behalf with My Aged Care. Your representative will be the first point of call when My Aged Care needs to contact you, including receiving any My Aged Care letters or other communications
- Communicate and organise assessors and service providers
- Make decisions on your behalf about any assessment or aged care service referrals
Your representative will receive a My Aged Care ID number that will be connected with your My Aged Care ID number, which will help My Aged Care identify them as your representative.
You will need to decide between two representative types if you want to implement this system.
There are two types of representatives. A regular representative is put in place with your agreement, and an authorised representative is someone who is put in place when you no longer have the capacity to make decisions for yourself.
As a regular representative you need to keep the older person actively involved in the decisions being made for their care and get their permission before you share their personal information with anyone.
If you are an authorised representative, you need to make decisions about the person's care and affairs that are in their best interest and not disclose any My Aged Care information to someone who isn't authorised.
A person with an authorised representative can speak to My Aged Care directly, but their representative will need to be with them.
Setting up a representative
If you decide that you want to have a representative to deal with My Aged Care matters on your behalf, there are four ways to set up a representative, including:
- Using the My Aged Care online account and adding in a regular representative into the relationship section of the profile
- Calling My Aged Care directly on 1800 200 422
- Setting up a representative with your aged care assessor
- Fill out an 'Appointment of a Representative' form
It can take around 10 days for a representative to be approved on an older person's My Aged Care account.
Authorised representatives will need to step forward and organise the above process for taking up this role, rather than the older person, however, they are required to provide certain documents to prove they are the right person for the role.
These legal documents include:
- An Enduring Power of Attorney document with a letter from a doctor stating the person doesn't have decisions making capacity (only available in the Australian Capital Territory, Queensland and Victoria)
- Advance Health Directive with a letter from a doctor stating the person doesn't have decisions making capacity (this does not work in the ACT or Western Australia)
- Enduring Guardianship with a letter from a doctor stating the person doesn't have decisions making capacity
- Guardianship order
- If you don't have any legal documents, you can provide a declaration saying that you are the best person to represent the older person as well as a letter for a doctor stating the person doesn't have decisions making capacity
Can I change my representatives?
If you have the capacity to, you can remove and change your representative at any time. You can also add another representative if you wish. Similarly, your representative can decide to no longer be in the role and remove themselves from your account.
You can change your representative information by using your My Aged Care online account or contacting My Aged Care directly on 1800 200 422 with the person you intend to make your new representative.
Why did you decide to appoint a My Aged Care representative? Tell us in the comments below.