Gippsland Lakes Community Health (GLCH) been providing quality health and wellbeing services to local communities for over forty years and is a major provider of Home Care Packages in East Gippsland.
A Home Care Package provides a coordinated package of support services tailored to meet people’s specific care needs and help them stay in their own home as they get older. Services, such as home care, preparing meals, assistance with showering, or transport are overseen by a care manager who works with people and their families to design and coordinate a package of care that suits their needs.
Home Care Package coordinator at GLCH, Debbie Smith is available to speak to community groups about the benefits of a home care package, the services GLCH provides, and other government programs and initiatives. Recently, Ms Smith spoke to the members of a planned activity group in Lakes Entrance.
“Under the new reform set to commence from February 2017, Home Care Packages will be allocated directly to the consumer via the new My Aged Care gateway,” said Ms Smith. “This means eligible recipients can choose which organisation manages their package and provides their services. This will be a significant change to how people access Home Care Packages, so we are visiting local community groups to let them know that our team are available to assist them with their aged care enquiries; and step them through the types of information My Aged Care will require to assess their needs.”
Mary Bennett, a long-time resident of Lakes Entrance, also spoke to the group about her experience as a recipient of a Home Care Package with GLCH; elaborating on the important role her care manager plays in her overall health and wellbeing.
Mary lives alone without family support and recently became ill. “I contacted my care manager for guidance and they immediately arranged for an Ambulance to take me to hospital where I was later admitted,” explained Mrs Bennett. “My care manager cancelled all my services and arranged for my dog and chooks to be cared for by a friend.”
Mary’s care manager also arranged for sleepwear and toiletries to be purchased and delivered to her in the hospital. All Mary had to do was focus on her recovery.
“When I was ready for discharge, my care manager arranged transport and reinstated all my services, said an appreciative Mrs Bennett. “The support from the team at GLCH was fantastic – their blood is worth bottling!”
Care managers also provide essential support to client’s families. “Often our family members live in faraway towns or interstate,” Ms Smith said. “Some find it difficult to provide support and keep up-to-date from a distance, so it can be very reassuring knowing that a care manager is looking out for their loved one and keeping them informed.”
GLCH offers a knowledgeable team who are ready to assist people with their aged care enquiries; or visit local community groups. Call today or visit www.glch.org.au for further details.
Pictured L to R: Debbie Smith, Home Care Packages coordinator with package recipient, Mary Bennett and Planned Activity Group coordinator, Gill Wheeler.