Accessing Aged Care: Seeking support from an advocate

Accessing Aged Care: Seeking support from an advocate

If you’re seeking or receiving government-funded aged care services, you may need some support to determine what’s best for your situation. An aged care advocate can help.

An advocate is an impartial person who can assist you in various situations – from understanding aged care services and fees to understanding your rights and managing your aged care.

What advocacy support is available?

The Australian Government offers free, independent, and confidential support through the National Aged Care Advocacy Program (NACAP). The program is delivered by the Older Persons Advocacy Network (OPAN), which has locations in every state and territory.

The Seniors Rights Service also offers free legal advice on many legal issues to older people in NSW.

All older Australians receiving or seeking government-funded aged care services, their families, and carers can access these services.

How does advocacy work?

Your advocate is committed to helping you by understanding your situation and providing impartial assistance that supports your best interests. They prioritise your needs and wants and will only share information with others if you permit them. Your privacy is respected at all times.

An aged care advocate can help with:

  • understanding aged care services or fees;
  • getting the most from your services;
  • guardianship information;
  • knowing and understanding your rights;
  • speaking with your service provider at your direction;
  • resolving concerns or complaints with your aged care provider about the services you receive;
  • communicating with your service provider at your direction;
  • increasing your skills and knowledge to advocate for yourself and
  • concerns that you may not be treated respectfully, fairly, or appropriately.

In conclusion, navigating the landscape of government-funded aged care services can be a complex journey, and seeking the assistance of an advocate can provide invaluable support and guidance. An advocate serves as an impartial ally, offering a wealth of information and insight to help individuals and their families make informed decisions about their care. 

Advocates play a multifaceted role, assisting individuals in understanding their rights, clarifying service offerings and associated fees, and ensuring that they receive the best possible care. By acting in the best interests of the individuals they support, advocates empower them to make well-informed choices and voice any concerns or complaints regarding their aged care services.

Furthermore, advocates can serve as catalysts for personal growth, enabling individuals to enhance their self-advocacy skills and knowledge. This empowerment fosters a sense of agency and dignity, helping individuals feel more in control of their care journeys.

In a society that values the well-being and dignity of older people, the role of aged care advocates is indispensable. Through their dedication and expertise, advocates ensure that everyone receives respectful, fair, and appropriate care tailored to their unique needs. As the aged care landscape continues to evolve, the availability of advocacy support remains a vital resource, enhancing the quality of life for older Australians and their families.


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