People identified as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or intersex (LGBTI) are often discriminated against. Much more when they seek aged care services. Aged care providers are mandated to ensure that all older people, notwithstanding their sexual orientation, can access aged care services without discrimination.
Thus, the Australian Government ensures that aged care services in the country are inclusive through the Aged Care Act. Aged care providers need to deliver responsive and respectful attention to the needs of LGBTI. Here are some tips on how LGBTI can get appropriate aged care services in Australia.
Contact an Aged Care Provider
You can call an LGBTI friendly aged care provider or visit their website to get more information on what services are available for you, their costs, and how you can get them. You will be asked some questions to determine your care needs. There will always be a gentle and compassionate care support personnel to answer your call.
Make sure that you have your Medicare card ready when calling any aged care provider. You may opt not to tell that you identify as LGBTI. But if you do, you are ensured that aged care personnel will treat all conversations with the utmost privacy and confidentiality. On the other hand, you will need consent if you are calling for on behalf of another older person.
Know the Different Services Available
Your aged care agent can recommend an experienced assessor to discuss the care services available for you. The assessor can personally visit you in your home to thoroughly examine your options. Below are the general types of aged care you can choose:
1. Help at Home
As people get older, more things become harder to do. You can ask for support and keep your independence at home. You will need home care in the following situations:
- Due to medical condition
- Reduced mobility
- Things become harder to do and remember
Help at home is categorised into two, depending on your needs:
- Entry Level Care – Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP)
If there are some things that you find challenging to do alone, you can get the CHSP. It is for those who need one or a few services like food preparation, transportation, therapy, home cleaning, shopping, or transport.
- More Complex Care – Home Care Packages
This package is for those who have more daily complex care needs. These services may include services to keep you well, safe at home, and help you interact with your community.
2. Short-Term Care
Short-term care is provided for those who need services for a limited time only. It will be given until such time that you can maintain your independence. This type of support service can be provided for a few days or a few months, depending on your needs. Below are the three types of Short-term care you can choose:p
- Restorative Care
- Transition Care
- Respite Care
3. Aged Care Home
Also called a nursing home or residential aged care facility is for older people who can no longer live independently at home. The aged care home provides continuing help with the daily needs and health care of the elderly. Your care support provider understands that leaving your home is never an easy decision. However, aged care homes can provide you with the services and support you need to maintain your quality of life. It can offer you the following:
- Personal and clinical care
- Hotel-type services
- Additional or extra services depending on the aged care home
Determine the Cost
Your aged care service provider will advise you about care costs and if you will need financial assessment. What you have to pay will depend on the following considerations:
- Your financial status
- The number of services you will get
- Type and level of care services
- Your service provider or care package type
The Australian Government gives subsidies to many aged care homes in the country. Thus, older people who need affordable support services will have access to this type of care. However, if you can afford, you will need to contribute to the cost of your care and accommodations, depending on your capacity.
4. Choose the Service or Facility You Want and Need
After given the choices and the possible costs, you can compare the various care programs. After that, you can determine and select the most advantageous that specialises for LGBTI. An aged care provider can also assist you in finding the most suitable service provider in your area.
You are not required to tell them that you identify as LGBTI. But in case you do, the care providers must respect your privacy. You might also want to ask them the following concerns:
- Ways how they make people feel safe, secured, included, and respected
- Having visitors like a partner or other members of your family
- Other LGBTI-related care needs
The Australian Government gives importance to aged Care of all those who need it. Each home care and program is different. To choose the proper support services that will cater your specific needs, you can contact Homestyle Aged Care to help you. They have 30 years of experience providing residential care homes and services around Australia.