10,000 additional Home Care Packages will improve the lives of many senior Australians living with dementia

Dementia Australia has welcomed the rollout of an additional 10,000 new high-level home care packages, which commences this week and will support more senior Australians, including those with dementia, to remain living independently in their own homes.

Dementia Australia CEO Maree McCabe said as the prevalence of dementia continues to increase so does the need for high-level home care packages.

“Currently, around 70 per cent of the more than 436,000 Australians with dementia live in the community. An increase of home care packages will help more Australians to live at home for as long as possible, in a supported way. This will make a substantial difference not only to their lives, but also to those of their families and carers, as well as the broader community,” Ms McCabe said.

“We welcome the federal government’s commitment to funding additional home care packages and the focus on supporting senior Australians, particularly those who live with dementia,” Ms McCabe said.

These additional home care packages will provide funding for up to $50,000 of care services per person per year, which may include home assistance, nursing, transportation, and meal preparation.

“While the additional support is welcomed, we would urge providers and the federal government to continue to focus on how people living with dementia can be supported effectively at home,” Ms McCabe said.

“We know there is much more to be done. Without a medical breakthrough, the number of people with dementia is estimated to more than double by 2058 to almost 1.1 million. Therefore, it is essential that we work with Government and providers to put in place the services and early intervention supports needed to help people live well at home for as long as possible.

“To ensure providers delivering these packages are appropriately educated and skilled in quality dementia care, we are calling for ongoing investment in training. We are also calling for the streamlining of My Aged Care to ensure people with a cognitive impairment have easy and straightforward access to the packages,” Ms McCabe said.