Almost 20,000 new Home Care Packages released in last quarter

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There are now 204,146 people accessing a Home Care Package (HCP), as the number of people waiting to receive a HCP continues to fall.

The Federal Government’s aim to keep older Australians living at home longer seems to be working as the number of people accessing HCP exceeds the 189,954 residents in residential and respite care as at 30 June 2020. An average of 3,600 HCPs were released per week in the September quarter.

The Home Care Packages Program Data Report (1st Quarter 2021-22), published on Wednesday, shows an additional 41,000 older Australians have accessed a HCP in the past 12 months. In the September 2021 quarter, 19,599 people entered a HCP for the first time.

At 30 September 2021, 204,146 people had access to a HCP, which is a 4.3% (8,447) increase since 30 June 2021 (195,699), and a 25.3% increase (41,173) since 30 September 2020 (162,973).

Of the 204,146 people given access to a HCP, 186,570 were in a HCP with the remaining 17,576 people assigned a HCP and considering whether to take up the offer.

In the Federal Budget, the Government allocated $6.5 billion for an additional 80,000 HCPs to support Senior who want to remain in their own home.

“In addition to the 40,000 packages released in 2021-22, another 40,000 packages will become available in 2022-23,” said Senator Richard Colbeck, Minister for Senior Australians and Aged Care Services.

“This means that by 30 June 2023 there will be around 275,600 packages available.”

As of 30 September, 10,000 (-1,250 Level 1,750 Level 2, 5,000 Level 3 and 1,500 Level 4) of the 80,000 Senator Richard Colbeck additional HCPs had been released. This represents one-quarter of the 40,000 allocation in 2021-22.

The Federal Government is intent on reforming the home care system by July 2023. A Support at Home Program will replace the Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP), the Home Care Packages (HCP) Program, Short-Term Restorative Care Programme (STRC), and residential respite programs.