We take the welfare of seniors seriously in Australia. As such, there are several services being offered to ensure that elderly citizens have access to proper assistance and care, some of which may be government-funded. If you or an elderly loved one needs extra support, it helps to be familiar with the different kinds of aged care support services available in Australia. So, here’s a primer on the various services available for seniors in the country.

Help at home

At-home aged care services are perfect for seniors who need assistance in their day-to-day but prefer to live in their own home. Kalinga Health’s services fall into this category as our primary clientele are seniors who live independently, albeit we can also provide short-term care when needed. The goal of services like these is to ensure that the elderly can stay at home where they’re comfortable but also have some help to ensure that they can do their day-to-day tasks whilst being safe and healthy.

Help can come in the form of making sure that seniors are healthy and well-nourished. These can be through meal deliveries such as those from Meals on Wheels, food preparation and cooking assistance, maintenance of personal hygiene, nutrition, and grooming (as in taking baths, taking medication, assisting when going to the bathroom), nursing care for patients who need specialised assistance and monitoring for health conditions, and therapy services. 

Domestic support to ensure that the elderly’s home is safe and well-kept is also an option. This can range from helping clean the house, doing the laundry, shopping assistance, home repairs and improvements like adding bathroom railings or fixing flooring, and even assisting the elderly experiencing homelessness in finding appropriate housing. 

Additionally, since the complete well-being of the elderly is a concern, there are services that help them stay as active and social as they want to be, ranging from driver services if they want to go out, special workshops, and even social calls. 

The Australian Government provides some subsidies through the Commonwealth Home Support Program, which caters to seniors who are still more mobile but require help with some daily tasks, and Home Care Packages, meant for the elderly with more complex care needs. You may visit the abovementioned pages to find out if your senior loved one’s eligibility for the subsidies which would usually depend on the required services and financial needs.

Short-term care

For elderly citizens who have just come home from the hospital or are just recuperating from an injury, or whose regular carer isn’t available, there are temporary care options. Short-term care or respite care can include the same assistance as those mentioned earlier, however the services are usually engage anywhere between a few days to just a couple of months at a time

Under this classification, you can choose from restorative care, transition care, and respite care. 

Short-term restorative care is meant for those who need some help but don’t yet see the need for long-term home health care services. Typically, the elderly will work with healthcare professionals who can help them slow the development of difficulties and device a management plan so the senior citizen can stay independent for longer.

Meanwhile, transition care is the choice for elderly persons who just need help recovering after a hospital stay. This will usually involved some specialised support to help the patient get back to their daily life and regain their independence sooner. Depending on the individual’s needs this may mean allied health support, nursing care, and personal care assistance (like help with cooking, eating, dressing up, or moving about). 

Finally, respite care is the support given to the elderly individual and their carer. This type of service allows the senior and their regular carer to take a break for anywhere between a few hours a day to even a week or longer. Respite care is normally planned early, if the regular carer is going to be unavailable, for instance if they’re going on vacation or have appointments. However, it’s also possible to call in for a substitute carer to provide support during emergencies like if the primary caregiver is ill or they have something urgent to attend to.

MyAgedCare has additional information on the different kinds of short-term care and how to check if you or your relative are eligible for a government subsidy on short-term care here.

Aged care homes

Some seniors may find it difficult to continue living at home and while it might not be an easy decision, but thankfully Australia has aged care homes to give you the care and support you need. Generally, aged care home residents will get accommodation with their own room and furniture, meals set to their dietary, religious, or cultural restrictions, laundry services, and activities that allow them to socialise with other residents. 

Healthcare services are also part of the day-to-day in aged care homes. Senior homes have teams of carers who can assist residents with personal care activities like grooming, eating, and taking their medications. There may also be nurses and therapists onsite, in addition to visiting doctors who can attend to the residents’ more complex medical concerns.

As with all the other types of aged care services available in Australia, the government offers subsidies to those who are eligible to receive it following an assessment. 

It’s truly fortunate that there are many opportunities for elderly care here in Australia, whether through government programs or private organisations, so that we and our senior-aged relatives are assured that we can remain as healthy, independent, engaged, and safe as we can be as we approach our twilight years. 

Kalinga Health is your partner in keeping the elderly safe and healthy
Kalinga Care specialises in helping home-based seniors access reliable and skilled healthcare assistance through our app and website. Just visit our website or download our app on iTunes or the Google Play Store for easier healthcare services booking for your elderly loved ones. You may also call us at +61-435-358-222 or e-mail us at info@kalingahealth.com.au for any enquiries.