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Understanding Home Care Package Level 1: A 2024 Guide

Post by Ruth Samer
February 21, 2024

Introduction to Home Care Package Level 1

Deciding it's time to get some help at home for your loved one can bring up a lot of questions, especially when it comes to choosing the right level of support. In Australia, a Home Care Package or HCP is an aged care solution that offers a range of services to assist older individuals in maintaining their independence and comfort at home.

When it comes to basic care needs, the Home Care Package Level 1 is generally the best option. Let's delve into what a Level 1 Home Care Package includes in 2024 and how it can enhance the daily life of your elderly loved one.

What is a Level 1 Home Care Package?

The most common question we encounter about HCPs at Care For Family is, 'What does a Level 1 Home Care Package include?'

Designed specifically for basic care needs, a Home Care Package Level 1 caters to older Australians who require only minor assistance to continue living independently and safely at home. This entry-level care includes services like personal care, domestic assistance, and social support, offering a helping hand with day-to-day tasks, helping to prevent social isolation and a decline in living standards as things get a little tougher to manage at home alone.

For example, consider Margaret, a vibrant and active 70-year-old who loves spending time in her garden but finds it harder to keep up with household chores like cooking and cleaning. A Level 1 Home Care Package provides Margaret with the necessary support, ensuring she can still enjoy her gardening while someone else takes care of the cleaning and meal preparation. She also has the option of assistance with transport to and from doctor's visits and social engagements, helping her to maintain her general wellbeing and stay connected socially.

Eligibility and Assessment for Home Care Packages Level 1-4

Navigating the eligibility for Home Care Packages Levels 1-4 begins with an assessment by the Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT). This process will determine whether your loved one qualifies for a Level 1 Home Care Package. Home Care Packages 2, 3, and 4 are designed for those who require higher levels of assistance at home, right up to 24-hour home care, for example. 

Note: Home Care Packages are not considered income, and therefore do not affect pension payments. Find out more about how an HCP will affect other government funding and benefits here.

The ACAT assessment looks into various aspects of an individual's life and health to understand their unique care needs and goals. It's a crucial step in ensuring that the care received is perfectly aligned with the requirements of each person.

Take, for instance, Roger, who at 75, is finding it increasingly challenging to manage heavy laundry and change the bedding. He doesn't want a fuss and would prefer to have as little interference in his day-to-day activities as possible. Through the ACAT assessment, it's determined that a Level 1 Home Care Package is ideal for providing him with the specific support he needs, while allowing him to continue living independently in the comfort of his own home.

A cheerful care professional making the bed with fresh linens, reflecting the daily support provided in home care services to maintain a comfortable and clean living environment.

Home Care Package Level 1 Funding and Costs

A key question many have is, how much is a Level 1 Home Care Package worth?

The Australian Government provides a subsidy for Home Care Package level 1, which is paid directly to the care provider for their services. As of 2024, the subsidy amount for a Level 1 package is approximately $10,271.10 annually and is subject to increase yearly.

Understanding Home Care Package funds involves considering the income-tested care fees, which are assessed by Centrelink based on individual financial situations. This fee, along with a possible basic daily fee, contributes towards the cost of your loved one's care. It's important for recipients to understand the potential fees involved before choosing a care provider. You can find out more about income tests and potential fee contributions on the My Aged Care website.

Maximising Your Level 1 Package

Maximising the benefits of a Level 1 Home Care Package involves thoughtful and practical use of the allocated funds. You might wonder, for example, can I buy a TV with my Home Care Package? In most cases, no, you wouldn't be able to buy a TV with your Home Care Package funds. While the focus is primarily on services directly related to care and living needs, it's essential to discuss permissible expenditures with your provider.

For example, if gardening is your passion, allocating funds for gardening assistance not only helps maintain your home but also contributes to your mental wellbeing. Similarly, funds used for transport can facilitate social activities, reinforcing the importance of social support in your care plan. We know it sounds tricky, but Care For Family can help you understand what is and isn't included in your Home Care Package funding.

Probably the best way to maximise the benefits of your HCP is to choose a HCP Provider that offers great value for money, so that you can receive the best possible care, for the least amount of money. That's exactly what we aim to offer at Care For Family, and because of that you can get up to two hours of care per week when you use Care For Family as your Provider.


*Where all remaining funds in package are used to purchase CFF care at Monday to Friday 2023 rates. Figures do not include cognition or veterans supplement.

**Where all remaining funds in package are used to purchase CFF care at Monday to Friday 2023 rates. Figures do not include cognition or veterans supplement nor temporary COVID subsidy.

Please know that if you require night or weekend care, Registered Nurse or Allied Health services, mileage, equipment hire and nursing resources paid by your Home Care Package, it will use some of your budget reducing the hours of care your Government Funded Home Care Package can pay for.

For more details, take a look at our Home Care Packages service page.

Transitioning to Home Care Packages Level 1-4 as Needs Change

Recognising the need to transition between levels of home care is crucial for ongoing support, as your loved one's needs change over time. For instance, if you find that the basic support of Home Care Package level 1 is no longer sufficient for your elderly mother or father, it might be time to consider Home Care Package Level 2 or higher. This process involves reassessment by the aged care assessment team to understand the evolved care needs and to adjust the care plan accordingly.

Happy senior couple sitting together, laughing and enjoying each other's company on a sunny patio, representing the companionship aspect of in-home care services.

Home Care Packages with Care For Family

The Home Care Package Level 1 offers foundational support for those with basic care needs, allowing them to continue enjoying the comforts and familiar surroundings of their own home. It's a stepping stone in the range of Home Care Packages level 1, 2, 3, and 4, and designed to be adaptable to the changing needs of your loved one over time. At Care For Family, we are the trusted experts in providing compassionate, professional in-home care for elderly Australians in the greater Sydney area.

For more information or to begin the assessment process and develop a care plan for a Home Care Package, don't hesitate to reach out. Our team is here to guide you through every step, ensuring your loved one receives the best possible care and support, no matter their needs. 

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