lady applying for care

How to apply for care

We appreciate that finding the right aged care facility that best suits your needs can be a complex and overwhelming task. Before entering residential care, you need to be comfortable with the decision as everyone’s circumstances differ.

Making sure that residential aged care is right for you or your loved ones is the first step. So too is ensuring that your assets are preserved and best protected for you and the future benefit of your family. We can certainly help by talking openly and honestly about your situation, needs and circumstances. Below is a table of actions that will guide you in the application process. If you have any questions or some areas are unclear, please don’t hesitate to call us along the way and we can help you through the process.

Application steps

  1. Contact the Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT Grafton) 02 6640 2413
  2. Make an appointment with ACAT for an assessment either in your own home or if necessary in hospital
  3. Make an appointment with the Director of Nursing at Mareeba by calling 02 6645 2966, to discuss the admission
  4. Discuss your intentions with your family
  5. Appoint an Enduring Power of Attorney and an Enduring Guardian. See your solicitor to complete these important documents.
  6. Make contact with a financial adviser to discuss your financial situation with regards to Accommodation Charges and Daily Care Fees.
  7. Once the documentation is completed and returned to Mareeba, your name will be placed on the waiting list. When a room becomes available you will be contacted for an admission interview.

Legal considerations

Every resident’s circumstances differ and it is vital you obtain professional legal advice. In addition to a Will there are legal arrangements that assist with planning for the future, enabling you to put your affairs in order. These can include completing an Enduring Power of Attorney and appointing an Enduring Guardian.

A Power of Attorney is a trusted person you appoint to ensure your financial matters are attended to when needed. An Enduring Power of Attorney is a document where you give a person the legal authority to make financial and legal decisions on your behalf once you no longer have the capacity to deal with these matters competently.

Likewise, by appointing an Enduring Guardian you give authority to someone you trust to make lifestyle choices for you once you no longer can make those decisions for yourself. For example, that person may be required to decide if you should have surgery, dental work, where you should live and many other matters relating to things other than your assets and finances.

There are many legal professionals who can help you plan ahead. Some lawyers are specialists in elder law matters.

Financial considerations

It is also important to plan ahead for your finances. Decisions you make about how you pay for accommodation affect pensions, aged care fees and tax.

Engaging the services of a qualified financial planner to help you is highly recommended. In addition The Department of Family, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs produces free booklets that provide basic information on topics such as investment options, accommodation choices, concessions, seniors organisations, and other support available. Booklets are available free of charge from Centrelink.

Click here to contact Mareeba’s Director of Nursing