Carers' evidence on aged care

aged care royal commission

Caring for seniors has a significant impact on a carer’s life. When I gave evidence at the Royal Commission on Aged Care, I acknowledged it’s a burden I willingly endured to delay my nanna’s placement into residential aged care for as long as possible. The same is true for many families. To ease overwhelm in providing aged care at home, it’s crucial to plan ahead and avoid being caught out by the long wait times for services. Becoming informed about home-based aged care supports earlier ensures you’re prepared for the help you need, when you need it.

Royal Commission on Aged Care identified the current aged care system is hard to navigate

Often, people are taking on the burden of care without knowledge of the supports available. Caring for seniors at home as they age is a choice many family members make willingly. Indeed, in many cases, home is the best place for their loved one to remain. Familiar surroundings are comforting and help maintain positive mental health.

But as health declines, family members are not informed about their choices for aged care support services and tend to take on more and more personal care functions. They’re dealing with situations as they arise, coping as best they can. The situation continues to become more and more stressful before they finally reach out for help.

Impact on quality of life of carers and their loved ones

As heard in evidence to the Aged Care Royal Commission from myself and others, the impact on carers’ lives is detrimental. Reducing to part time work and missing out on social engagements and freedoms leads to carers burning out and suffering their own health issues. Many carers wouldn’t have it any other way, though. Their commitment to caring for their loved ones comes first.

This shouldn’t have to be the only choice.

Planning ahead for support services makes caring for seniors more manageable

For many carers doing it tough alone, having access to home care packages and carer respite could make all the difference to their health and that of their loved one. The information about support services for home-based aged carers can be hard to find, and difficult to navigate. Tragically, once the need for home-based help is identified, the long wait times for services can mean the carer and senior are coping without help for a long time.

The key to managing the burden of aged care at home is to identify the support services available, determine what you’re eligible for, and apply as soon as you think you’d need them. Particularly with My Aged Care services, there is a significant lead-time and application process that can be pretty complex for the uninitiated.

At Empower Aged Care we can clarify all the requirements, and we have a done-for-you process to smooth the way to accessing home-based aged care supports through our aged care advisory service.

Arranging a Holistic Aged Care Assessment well in advance is a good plan so you can be informed and ready for when the need for aged care services crops up. Remaining at home for longer should be a priority in today’s aged care system, for choice and control in aged care services.

For any questions about finding home-based aged care support services to meet your needs, give me a call: Nicole Dunn 0404 444 985

Read the full article “Carers’ evidence on aged care”

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