Home & Community Care Review Program
The Institute of Health Communities Australia (IHCA), has been the sole provider and contracted from 2001 to 2012 by Queensland Health, and subsequently the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services to be the third party reviewing agency for firstly the Home and Community Care (HACC) National Service Standards and more latterly the Community Care Common Standards (CCCS). At 30 June 2012, the IHCA had conducted approximately 2500 Standards reviews and provided assistance to service providers in drafting individually developed quality action plans.
As part of the contractual relationships with the Department, IHCA also facilitated 150 educational workshops up until 30 June, 2012. Over 2000 participants attended the two day workshops which included modules on continuous quality improvement and integrated planning and evaluation frameworks.
What has happened to the HACC program?
The Home and Community Care (HACC) Program, established under the Home and Community Care Act 1985, was a joint Australian Commonwealth and State/Territory Government program, that provided support to all frail aged people, younger people with disabilities and their carers. The program was designed to help clients remain at home and prevent inappropriate or premature admission to residential care environments.
The Australian Government, the State and the Territory Governments jointly funded the HACC Program. The State and Territory governments were responsible for managing the program while the Australian government maintained a broad strategic role.
In the lead up to July 2012 a decision was taken by Commonwealth and State Ministers for a separation of program management responsibilities for people aged 65 years' and over (or 50 years' and over for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people); and for people under the age of 65 years' (or under 50 for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people).
There does remain a HACC Program in title, yet it is a name to be used by the Commonwealth to describe their program, which came into effect on 1 July 2012.
Under the new Commonwealth HACC Program the Australian Government has taken full funding, policy and operational responsibility for HACC services for older people in all States and Territories (except Victoria and Western Australia). The changes to HACC do not apply to Western Australia and Victoria. In these states, basic community care services will continue to be delivered under a program funded by both the Australian Government and the State Government, day to day administration of the program in these states is a State Government responsibility.
The State and Territory Governments continue to fund and administer home and community care services for people under the age of 65 years', or under 50 years’ for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. In Queensland the funder is the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services and the program is known as the Community Care Program.
Some services may receive funding for people over and under 65 years’ and therefore they would be receiving funds from the Commonwealth HACC Program and the Queensland Community Care Program.