In this week’s episode, Carrie and Kell look at bringing your team along. Shining the spotlight on ‘who’ in your organisation needs to know ‘what’ in the lead up to the Home Care Package reforms that will be introduced on 27th February 2017. Additionally, Carrie and Kell discuss ways in which you can inform key stakeholders of these changes.

Bringing your team along

Ensure everyone in your organisation and other key stakeholders are aware of the changes, what it means to their role and what it means to the business overall.

  • Who are the key people in your organisation?

Internal Stakeholders for a remote service operating under a Regional Council or Shire model:

  • CEO
  • Community Managers
  • Finance staff
  • HR staff
  • Care Staff

Do they know what is happening and are they ready?

Internal Management

Questions to ask:

  • Do they understand that the funding arrangement for Home Care Packages? E.g. the Home Care Package program is not block funded and is to be allocated to an individual?
  • Is there a system in place for developing client budgets and statements? (may be separate from your organisation’s overall finance system)
  • Does your organisation have systems in place to facilitate brokerage arrangements
  • Do you have a system in place for monitoring funds coming in from Medicare?
  • Do they understand what needs to happen to unspent funds when a client no longer needs a package?
  • Do they understand there may need to be an adjustment in the number and type of employee in the aged care program?
  • Do they understand the time frames for forwarding unspent funds to a new provider?

How will you communicate this information?

Tips for communicating this information:

  • Have a face to face meeting with relevant staff
  • Highlight the relevant essential information that individuals in their role need to be aware of. Eg finance and individual budgets and the time frames for forwarding individual budget surpluses and why they need to be on top of individual consumer monthly statements.
  • Prepare a mini report on the changes and what you’ve done in the service to meet these changes.

Care Staff

Do care staff understand the changes and what it may mean to them in their role?

  • Consumers may take their package to another provider
  • The changes that are coming and what it means to them eg they may have a change in hours – more or less, different types of services they may be providing and they may be providing care under a brokerage arrangement so less flexibility – change in communication process.
  • Different consumers will have different levels of packages and therefore different levels of support.
  • What are the limitations to a package – what are excluded items
  • The monthly statement – probably because they will be the ones explaining it to consumers and their families.

Tips for communicating this information:

  • Staff meetings – explain over a period of time rather than all at once
  • Tool box talk or info share that discusses the changes in a straight forward way covering the ‘need to know’ information.
  • Use scenarios to explain how the changes might look in their situation / community.

External Stakeholders

What about external stakeholders, e.g. doctors and community nurses or other community members for services that operate independent of the Community Government Council.

  • Do clinic staff and the referring Doctors understand that consumers need to access aged care via the My Aged Care portal?
  • Do clinic staff and referring specialists understand that you may not be able to provide care and support at the level a person requires until they receive a package?
  • Do clinic staff and others on the community understand that your organisation may not be the only one providing care and support from 27th Feb 2017?
  • Do clinic staff and others in the community understand that your organisation may be providing support to an individual but the management of the package may sit with another provider?

Tips for communicating this information?

  • Fact sheets that are printed from the Department of Health website.
  • Attend a health staff meeting and explain the changes – morning meetings
  • Own updated client information packs – some of the ones we’ve developed in the past have included client pamphlets eg fees brochures, staff brochures and client handbooks
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Carrie and Kell

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