What's the difference between aged care homes and nursing homes?
Let's take a closer look at these commonly used terms.
If you’re researching on Aged Care Homes, you might also hear the term Nursing Homes and Residential Aged Care Homes being used interchangeably. But is there a difference between these terms?
Understanding the different jargon used in the industry can be confusing, especially if you’re new. So, let’s take a closer look into Aged Care Homes and Nursing Homes.
There is no difference between Aged Care Homes and Nursing Homes. Both terms, along with the expression residential aged care facility, are used when referring to a home that helps residents with everyday tasks, personal care, and nursing care.
Aged Care Homes provide suitable living arrangements for seniors who can no longer live independently. Besides safe accommodation, these homes offer round-the-clock care so that seniors can maintain a good quality of life in their old age. More importantly, Aged Care Homes also provide clinical care for unwell or injured residents.
It’s important to note that Retirement Villages and Independent Living Units are not the same as Aged Care Homes or Nursing Homes. While these residential homes do provide care and socialisation opportunities, their services are meant for older people with lower care needs. These homes are also not government-funded and not regulated by the Australian government.
A long time ago, the Aged Care industry was separated by the level of care provided by a facility. Residents who required a higher level of care went to Nursing Homes, while those with lower care needs opted for hostel-type facilities.
However, in the 1990s, the industry underwent a couple of changes by the government to make all services accessible and affordable for older citizens. As a result, the Aged Care Act 1997 (which now governs Australia’s Aged Care laws) brought together Nursing Homes, hostels, and support services under the overarching name of Aged Care Services.
Nowadays, the new term for Nursing Homes or Aged Care Homes is also known as Residential Care Homes. This is meant to illustrate a holistic care model where residents with different clinical needs live together under appropriate support and supervision in a residential facility. The term Nursing Home is rarely used in the industry, as it traditionally refers to a home that only looks after patients with high clinical needs.
If you’re looking for an Aged Care Home for yourself or your loved one but do not wish to pay for the total costs by yourself, there are many government-funded Aged Care Homes available. Here’s a step-by-step process on how to enter a subsidised Aged Care Home.
You’ll have to undergo an assessment by My Aged Care to check if you’re eligible for a subsidy from the government
Once approved, you’ll then receive a letter to certify that you are eligible to enter an Aged Care Home with the subsidised fees.
Understand the fees you’ll need to pay, such as accommodation fees, basic daily fees, and means-tested fees. The amount of subsidy you get from these fees will depend on your assessment with My Aged Care.
Find an Aged Care Home that can provide the appropriate clinical, social, and everyday living services for you or your loved one.
Apply for the Aged Care Home by submitting the appropriate documents and paying the fees that are agreed upon, and continue to manage your care and stay in the home.
Understanding Aged Care Homes can be difficult, as it is a challenge to know where to start when applying for a government-funded home. Luckily, you do not have to do it alone. Care About helps seniors find the right Aged Care Homes for themselves and their loved ones and navigate the various assessments for government-funded aged care services. For experienced help in finding care providers, contact our team for a personalised discussion.