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Getting Started

Step 1 – Arrange an aged care assessment

An aged care assessment is completed by a member of the Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT). The assessment is normally organised through your doctor, another health professional or directly through the ACAT team. It is conducted to assess the care needs of an individual and helps them access the most appropriate types of care, including approval for Australian Government subsidised care services.

The assessor will spend time with you and your family discussing the process and will visit you at home or at hospital if an assessment is thought to be necessary.

An aged care assessment:

  • Confirms eligibility for entry into aged care
  • Allows you to be assessed for permanent care
  • Allows you to be assessed for respite care
  • Approves eligibility for a package of community care/home care to help you continue living at home, or refer you to other services that will help you to continue living at home

Having an ACAT assessment does not mean you have to enter a residential aged care home, but not having one will delay the process should you need care.

Add ACAT link

Step 2 – Complete a Centrelink financial assessment form

This form can be obtained through Centrelink. It is advisable to complete the form and return it to Centrelink. Once Centrelink has reviewed the form, they will then send you an income and assets assessment letter. This letter details any costs you may need to contribute to your care and accommodation and should be provided to your preferred care home. It could take up to six weeks before you receive the letter.

Step 3 – Find the right aged care home

Once you have finalised you’re your ACAT assessment with the assessment team, you will be ready to start arranging tours around aged care homes to find the right one for you or your loved one.

You can get information about aged care homes in your area from the My Aged Care Website. Once you’ve compiled a shortlist of homes, it’s a good idea to visit as many of them as possible as although homes may offer similar services, they are all unique. To make an appointment to visit Multicultural Aged Care Illawarra to view our aged care facility and to meet with one of our specialised staff, please visit our “Request a visit section

Step 4 – Arranging your finances

Financial Advice

We recommend you visit a financial professional who can guide you through the decisions in the transition into aged care. Independent financial advisors are fully accredited and can provide financial advice and assistance to anyone entering aged care.

Costs and payment options

The cost of entering an aged care home is made up of two parts – care fees and accommodation fees. How much you can expect to pay and your payment options will depend on your individual circumstances.

Step 5 – Resident Agreement

Once you have decided which care home is right for you or the one you love, the home will provide you with a Resident Agreement which needs to be completed and signed before you move in. This agreement is a legal document between you and the home and includes details about services provided, fees being charged and your rights and responsibilities.