What Can You Expect From Home Care Package Wait Times?

You have to go through Home Care Package wait times before accessing in-home care services. Read this article on how long you can expect to wait.

Updated on Jun 17, 2024
5 min read

Summary: You may have to wait one month to a year to access your Home Care Package. How long you will have to wait depends on your level of urgency, location, and the availability of Home Care Packages.

The process of applying for a Home Care Package is lengthy. 

In the final part of the application, you will be put on a waiting list. Once you are approved for a Home Care Package, it will take some time before a package is assigned to you. 

You may be on the waiting list for one month to a year. It depends on your priority level, location, and level of care.

In the meantime, you are free to browse Home Care Package providers. You can also get home care through other programs while you wait.

What Are Home Care Package Wait Times?

The Home Care Package application process includes a waiting list. 

When you apply for a Home Care Package, you will undergo an assessment. If deemed eligible, you will be placed on the national priority system. 

How much time will pass before someone contacts you depends on a few factors. These include:

  • Your priority level
  • The level of care you need
  • Your location
  • HCP availability

The most important factor is your priority level.

The government prioritises applicants based on their needs and circumstances. Those with urgent needs might receive their packages sooner than others with less critical needs.

Your priority level will be determined during your assessment. It will depend on your care needs. 

Those with a medium priority level can expect to wait:

  1. Less than 1 month for a Level 1 Home Care Package
  2. 3 to 6 months for a Level 2 Home Care Package
  3. 9 to 12 months for a Level 3 Home Care Package
  4. 6 to 9 months for a Level 4 Home Care Package

As you can see, you can wait one month to one year for your Home Care Package.

Note that your wait time officially starts from the date on your letter of approval.

A table listing Home Care Package wait times for each level

Waiting for Your Home Care Package

Unfortunately, many applicants have to wait a long time before accessing home care services. But there are things you can do while waiting for the confirmation letter, including:

  • Researching home care providers
  • Checking in with My Aged Care
  • Signing up for the Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP)
  • Turning to non-government-funded services
  • Staying informed

While waiting for your package, you are free to browse your options when it comes to providers.

Make sure to find a provider that meets all your care needs and offers services in your area. You can also use My Aged Care to find a provider

Many people don't know this, but you can find out your expected wait time through My Aged Care. Just log into your online account or contact My Aged Care directly.

Another option is to apply for the Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP). This program provides entry-level support services like cleaning, meals, and personal care.

You can also turn to private care services. This can be more expensive. But it ensures that you get the necessary care while waiting for your HCP.

It's always a good idea to stay informed about Home Care Packages. Look out for changes in aged care policies or other support options available in the community.

A list of what you can do while being on the waiting list

What Happens Next?

Your wait time will be officially over when you receive a letter confirming you have been assigned a package.

This letter will include details about the level of care you have been assigned and the date from which your package is available.

You can be assigned to one of the following package levels:

  1. Level 1 if you have basic care needs
  2. Level 2 if you have low-level care needs
  3. Level 3 if you have intermediate-level needs
  4. Level 4 if you have high-level care needs

As you can see, the higher the level, the more you might have to wait for your package.

Before you receive the confirmation letter, you will get a letter notifying you that your package is available. This letter tells you to get ready for your Home Care Package. You will receive it around three months before the confirmation letter. 

Make sure to choose a home care provider during this three-month window. When you receive the second letter, you will have 56 days to sign a Home Care Agreement with the provider of your choice.

That's why it's important to find a provider before the confirmation letter arrives.

If you don't choose a provider on time, your package will expire. Not only will you be removed from the waiting list, but someone else will get your spot as well. 

But don't worry. If you didn't manage to find a provider you liked during this three-month period, you are allowed to ask My Aged Care for help. You may ask for a 28-day extension.

What if You Are Not Eligible?

You might not be eligible for a Home Care Package. If this happens to you, here are some other options you have:

  • Non-government-funded services
  • The Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP)
  • Community and volunteer services
  • The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)
  • State and local government programs
  • Family and friends 

The Commonwealth Home Support Program is a popular alternative. 

It provides entry-level support services to help older Australians remain independent at home. Eligibility for the CHSP is usually less stringent than for HCPs.

If you are younger than 65 and have a disability, you can apply for the NDIS. The eligibility criteria for the NDIS are different from that of Home Care Packages.

You can also apply for private home care services. 

While this can be more expensive than government-subsidised care, it offers flexibility in terms of the type and amount of care provided. 

Many private care agencies offer a range of services like those available through HCPs.

A lot of community organisations and charities offer support services for older adults, often at low or no cost. 

These services can include transportation, meal delivery, companionship, and help with daily activities.

If all else fails, you can seek support from your support network, which includes your family and friends.

A list of what you can do if you're not eligible for a Home Care Package

Inclusive Home Care Is Ready for You

If you are on the waiting list right now, and you're going through potential providers, take a second to consider Inclusive Home Care.

As an approved Home Care Package provider, we offer high-quality personalised senior support. We provide the care and support seniors actually need to stay happy and healthy at home. 

With our specialised support, you will be able to face everyday challenges with peace of mind. Some of our Home Care Package services include:

  1. Home maintenance
  2. In-home respite
  3. Personal care
  4. Nursing services
  5. Cleaning
  6. Help with household chores

With our expert caregivers, personalised plans, and flexible services, we will help you take your life back into your hands. 

You can give us a call if you have any questions. You can also book a free, no-obligation consultation with us today.

Understanding Home Care Package Wait Times 

Waiting for your Home Care Package can be frustrating. The waiting process might even last up to one year. But don't let that time go to waste.

Contact Inclusive Home Care as soon as you find out your Home Care Package is available. That will give us enough time to prepare for your arrival, making the transition that much easier. 

Schedule a free personalised consultation now.

Learn what options suit you with a free, no-obligation consultation.