Home is where the heart is

17 October 2020
Ann (right), her husband Steve, and Ann's mother Evelyn. Image: Catholic Healthcare/Supplied.


This Carers Week (11-17 October), Catholic Healthcare acknowledges and thanks all the carers across Australia providing care and support to a family member or friend – like Ann and Steve who care for their mum, Evelyn, at home with the support of a Home Care Package.

Evelyn is 93 years old and living with dementia. Her daughter Ann made the decision eight years ago to care for her mum in her own home and has never regretted the decision.

“She’s my mum,” says Ann. “I’m happy to do it. It’s hard at times but I am glad she is at home with us.”

According to a Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety survey released in July 2020, most Australians want to receive care when they need it in their own homes. A survey of more than 10,000 Australians revealed that 80 per cent of older people want to remain in their current home and 62 per cent want to receive care services in their own home.

Evelyn is a client of Catholic Healthcare and has been approved for a Level 4 Home Care Package.

“When we were approved for a Home Care Package, a hospital aged care assessor provided us with a list of local service providers,” says Ann. “We contacted three providers and Catholic Healthcare responded promptly so we went with them.

“Communication between a home care provider and the client is very important,” says Steve, Ann’s husband who shares the care of Evelyn. “Earlier this year we were feeling frustrated with the level of service and the fee system, but since our new Care Advisor, Rebecca, came on board in April we are very happy, and everything has been addressed.

“Rebecca has worked with us to ensure Evelyn gets what she needs from the funding provided. She has organised fortnightly respite for us as well as personal care for Evelyn. A physiotherapist had also been arranged to visit the home and assess Evelyn, as she needs help with flexibility to help her walk.

“Through Rebecca, we are well informed and continuously updated, we know what Evelyn is eligible for and what services and equipment we can request to make her life as comfortable as possible.”

Rebecca is pleased she is able to deliver a positive home care experience for Ann and Steve.

“Comprehensive case management is an important part of Catholic Healthcare’s customer experience”, says Rebecca. “For Evelyn, Ann and Steve this has meant building a strong rapport and providing regular, prompt communication. We are identifying additional services to enhance Evelyn’s care, while providing the supports needed for Ann and Steve. We are liaising with hospitals and allied health professionals to ensure Evelyn’s needs are being met, and actioning recommendations, all the timekeeping in regular contact with the family.

“Without case management, clients feel they have to do all the research themselves, seek out services and source equipment. We know from experience that clients who receive high-quality case management and support stay in their own home longer.”

Catholic Healthcare was disappointed to learn of the 7.30 Report segment on Home Care Packages which aired on 8 September 2020. The story was not accurately fact-checked to reflect the family’s current circumstances, with footage shown from out-of-date interviews filmed many months ago.

Catholic Healthcare offers a range of home care services which can be funded through the Government’s Commonwealth Home Support Programme or a Home Care Package. Find out more by calling 1800 225 474 or visit our website – www.catholichealthcare.com.au/homecare/

Catholic Healthcare was established in 1994 by the Bishops of New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory as a response to changing needs in the provision of health, aged, and community services.  It began as an initiative of the Sisters of Charity, the Sisters of St Joseph, NSW Province, the St John of God Brothers, the Little Company of Mary, the St John of God Sisters and the Sisters of Mercy, Singleton.

With thanks to Catholic Healthcare.


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