Respite care is often defined as temporary institutional care of a sick, elderly, or disabled person, providing relief for their usual carer.
Most people have heard of respite care, but not a lot understand how to access it or why it’s so beneficial.
Our Aged Care Coordinator and Associate Director, Naomi Anderson, believes it’s a great alternative to permanent care for those not quite ready, or who are receiving care at home.
“Respite care gives their carers/family a break, reducing the incidence of carers fatigue,” says Ms Anderson.
“Caring for an elderly loved one is very rewarding, but presents its own challenges – the biggest factor being exhaustion/fatigue.”
The Aged Care Ready team strongly encourages carers to ensure they look after their own health and have a break from time to time.
“We find that there is a lot of guilt surrounding this topic, however, we remind our clients families that in order to look after someone else, they must first look after themselves,” says Naomi Anderson.
“It’s also a good opportunity to ‘trial’ an aged care facility on a short term basis – to see how they work/operate and how your loved one adapts to their new surroundings,” she suggests.
“This can be particularly helpful if there is a plan to move forward into permanent care.”
It’s also a great resource if the carer – or even the elderly person them self – is recovering from surgery or illness.
There are different types of respite care – from in home respite (via their Home Care Package) or residential respite (under ACAT or ACAS).
“Access to respite care is determined by the assessed need and also availability in the respite facility,” advises Ms Anderson.
“For residential respite, the recipient can access up to 63 days of respite care per year. This can be taken a few days at a time, through to a few weeks at a time. In our experience, most facilities have a minimum of a 2 weeks stay.”
At Aged Care Ready, we utilise respite care if urgent care is needed for our client and research is still being undertaken to find our client the best care solution for their individual needs.
We find that it is a great option if the client can no longer go home after a hospital stay, and an aged care facility has not yet been found – we don’t rush the process, so that we can achieve the best results for our clients.
If you or your loved ones need assistance navigating the aged care industry please call us on 1300 023 589.