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What is a home care plan?

Once you have chosen a home care organisation to provide you with services, you will need to work with your new provider on a home care plan to make sure the care and support you receive fits your needs and wishes.

Last updated: June 5th 2022
You and your provider will sit down together and collaborate to make an individualised home care plan that fits your needs. [Source: Adobe Stock]

You and your provider will sit down together and collaborate to make an individualised home care plan that fits your needs. [Source: Adobe Stock]

Key points:

  • Your home care plan will reflect your care needs and your goals
  • Your chosen home care provider will sit down and work with you on an individualised home care plan
  • If your needs change, you can ask your provider for a home care plan review

A home care plan is an important component of a home care agreement with a provider. You can learn more about agreements in our article ‘Understanding your home care agreement‘.

The individualised plan should outline the support and care you need to live well at home, as well as any wishes or goals you have that will greatly increase your health and wellbeing while receiving services.

Your provider will sit down and work together with you on your plan to ensure it fits your personal needs and fits within your funding budget.

So what’s in the plan?

The care plan layout

The main components of your care plan include:

  • What your needs are for home care
  • What services you can expect to receive at home and in the community
  • Your goal, wishes and preferences for home care services
  • The cost of services and what you will need to pay
  • Who from the organisation will provide these services
  • Information on when they will provide these services

It will also outline your agreed arrangements for the management of your care, your level of involvement in your care or Home Care Package, and the expectations around formal assessments. You can learn more about involvement in your care in our article, ‘Self-managing your Home Care Package‘.

You can expect to see similar information outlined in your home care agreement.

This gives you a firm outline of what your expectations can be of your provider and what care and support they provide you.

Consider your goals

Before your meeting to discuss your care plan, you should think about your personal goals and wishes for the home care services you will receive.

You should ask yourself a number of questions including what brings you joy and meaning in your life, what things are working at home and what isn’t, and what improvements can be made to make your daily life better.

For instance, you may be wanting help with bigger jobs around the home such as cleaning the bathroom or mopping the kitchen floor, but not completely give up the day to day chores that make you feel independent such as doing the laundry or preparing meals. Reablement may be a goal that you want to work towards where your provider assists you in working on your current skills.

Or, if you are keen on remaining connected with your community, you can outline your wishes to regularly visit places in your area and catch up with friends and family and current social groups.

Once you have an idea of how you want home care to improve your life, you can sit down with your provider and collaborate on your home care plan.

Working on the plan

Your home care provider will refer to your aged care assessment results for services and supports you need while also taking into account your personal goals.

When putting together your care plan, your provider will consider a number of things while sorting out what services you need to receive.

For every service they put on your care plan, your provider will look at its suitability for your care needs, whether it finds within your current budget from the Government, if you have specific care workers you wish to work with, and what supports you are currently receiving from friends and family.

Home care services you could receive include shopping and transport assistance, personal care, food and meal preparation, respite, medication management, socialisation activities, domestic assistance, garden and house maintenance and modifications, and assistive equipment.

Your provider will also talk you through all the costs of services and whether you have enough funds to cover all the services you need or want.

Sometimes, you may need to prioritise the services that are most important to your health and wellbeing to fit within your budget.

If you don’t have enough funds for the services you need, your provider can provide you with additional services if you agree to pay the cost.

Additionally, if you are non-English speaking and require a worker who can talk with you in the same language but your provider can’t fulfil this need, your provider may discuss the option of having an interpreter included in the costs of your home care plan.

There will also be a section explaining how the provider will measure your progress in meeting your goals in your home care plan.

Once you have finalised your home care plan with your provider, they will provide you with a detailed copy within the first 14 days of your signing or entering a home care agreement with your provider.

Changes and reviews

Your home care plan with your provider won’t stay the same from when you first start receiving home care services.

Just like how your health and wellbeing can change from month to month, so can your home care plan.

Your provider will review your current home care plan at least once a year to ensure that it is still providing you with all the services and supports you need to live healthy and well at home, while also meeting your personal goals.

However, if you believe your care needs have changed or you develop new goals, you can ask your provider at any time to do a review of your home care plan. To learn more about changing your plan, read our article ‘Reviewing your home care plan‘.

What do you want to be included in your home care plan? Tell us in the comments below.

Related content:

Reviewing your home care plan
Understanding your home care agreement
How much can home care cost?

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