Council services and the federal aged care reforms
With the introduction of federal government's aged care reforms, we have been reviewing how we can best support our community.
The federal aged care reforms
The federal government is reforming the aged care system to allow for greater choice and control and to make it easier for older people to access services. One of these changes is the Victorian Home and Community Care (HACC) program being replaced by the Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP), providing a more consumer driven, market-based and nationally consistent system.
As part of the reforms, the existing funding arrangements between the federal government and Council are scheduled to change in July 2020, and this will affect our service delivery. Challenges for Council include funding instability and an increasing range of service providers with greater ability to provide a broader range of services.
Between August and December 2017, we hosted an online forum, alongside a postcard survey and a public meeting through our Older Person's Reference Group, to seek the community’s view on Council’s future role under the CHSP. You can find a summary of the meeting and the responses provided by the community here (PDF, 275KB).
The outcomes of the online forum, postcards and public meeting were a key input for the evaluation of our role and in establishing how we best support residents.
At the Council meeting on 20 February 2018, Maribyrnong City Council decided to explore which providers are best placed to deliver in-home CHSP services in Maribyrnong, under a sub-contracting arrangement.
As part of this process, we are committed to:
- Continuity and quality of care for our clients;
- Maintaining local employment for our employees;
- Minimising change;
- Communicating openly and regularly with employees, their union, clients and community.
Why have we made this decision?
The federal government's aged care reforms impact on local government across Victoria. In particular, the structures and processes that created the unique Victorian HACC model have been, and will continue to be, seriously disrupted. Key factors that make it difficult for local councils to continue as providers include funding instability and competition from other providers with greater ability to be flexible and tailor support. There is evidence that other providers will be better placed to provide a comprehensive and quality service in the new funding environment.
This process will place us in the best position to support our workforce, clients and community in the lead up to the national reforms.
What will happen to the Council services I currently receive?
Council's decision will not impact the current services provided to you. You will continue to receive the same standard of care and services that you do today. We are committed to handling any transition period with a focus on minimising service disruption, and ensuring services remain accessible for community members.