From 1 July 2012, the Commonwealth will directly fund basic community care services in all states and territories, except Western Australia and Victoria. This covers people aged 65 and over and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 50 and over.
All HACC service providers should continue to work directly with people who raise concern because this can achieve a fast and sustainable resolution.
Under the new funding arrangement people may also contact the Aged Care Complaints Scheme (the Scheme) if they have a concern about a Commonwealth HACC service. The Scheme will encourage people to raise their concerns with the service provider in the first instance, unless a service recipient’s health or safety is at risk.
The process for the Scheme resolving HACC complaints will draw on the Scheme’s current approach. The Scheme was strengthened in 2011 with a new complaints framework which takes a more collaborative approach to resolving concerns and includes more options for resolving complaints. The current Scheme framework is supported by the aged care industry which was engaged throughout its development.
Complaints about HACC services will not be assessed against the Aged Care Act 1997. They will be assessed against a HACC service provider’s funding agreement with the Australian Government, which defines the quality of care and services they are required to deliver.
HACC service providers are required to have effective processes in place to manage complaints at the local level. If anyone has a concern about your services you should try to resolve it with them first.
The Scheme has several resources to assist you to resolve complaints locally. These can be found online in the Industry toolkit.
Where the Scheme is examining concerns about the care and services you are providing, we may:
- contact you directly to discuss a concern
- ask you to participate in conciliation between yourselves and the complainant
- visit where your services are provided to look into a concern
- ask you to examine and address a concern within a specified timeframe and report back to the Scheme.
We will continue to update this website with information about HACC complaints and will be sending out information to HACC service providers. You can subscribe to updates by entering your email address into the ‘Subscribe to updates’ field on the right hand side of this page.
Additionally, a HACC complaints fact sheet is available to distribute to your staff and service recipients. You can also order copies of this fact sheet by calling National Mailing and Marketing at (02) 6269 1000.
If you have any questions or comments about HACC complaints please post them below.