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Personal care a priority for MidCentral DHB

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Changes to funding for home and community services will enable MidCentral DHB to support more older people to live at home.

​The MidCentral DHB is committed to supporting older people to stay in their own homes for as long as possible when it is safe to do so.  In recent years the demand for personal care services (bathing, toileting, dressing) has increased and the demand for these services is outgrowing our available funding.

In order to be able to support more clients with personal care needs, we are reducing the amount of home management (vacuuming, dusting, laundry) provided to those clients who do not receive personal care. From 28 September these clients will see a reduction in the amount of home management support they receive, with a new maximum of one hour per fortnight. 

This change will affect  around 1,000 people, most of whom are currently receiving 1 hour of home management a week and do not receive personal care supports.  These are clients whose hours were based on previous policies that have now changed. 

From April 2015, MidCentral DHB’s policy is that any new referrals (or reassessments) to Supportlinks must have high enough needs to be allocated personal care if they are to receive home management. If they do not require personal care, they will not receive home management. This group of 1000 clients has been grand-parented (ie keep their allocations under the previous policy) and therefore still receive solely home management support.

Mr Craig Johnston, MDHB’s General Manager, Funding and Planning said: “The focus of this change is to enable us to provide more personal care services, and keep more older people in their own homes for longer.

“It is important to us that those on home management still continue to receive a level of support. This change strikes a balance between increasing support for those with personal care needs and recognising those who have been given home management support in the past.

“We recognise there may be instances where a person’s needs change while they are still managing at home, if an assessment shows a higher level of support is required, then this will be provided by the Supportlinks needs assessment service. A letter is going out to all clients to notify them of these changes and who they can contact for further information and assistance.”

Contact: Communications Unit (06) 350-8945

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