Commonwealth Department of Health
Older Australians are often faced with a complex and confusing set of entry points into aged care services. The Aged Care System Navigator Measure (the Measure) has been introduced to assist and guide older Australians and their families to better understand and access the aged care system. The Measure is aimed particularly at vulnerable people or those facing barriers to accessing aged care services.
The Department appointed AHA to evaluate the Measure because of our extensive track record of evaluating programs in the aged care sector, and our recognised ability to engage sensitively with people from diverse, vulnerable or ‘hard-to-reach’ population groups.
The Measure involves delivery of a program of trials across Australia from October 2018 to June 2020:
The aged care information hubs trials, community hubs trials and specialist support workers trials are being delivered by a consortium led by COTA Australia. The aged care financial information service officers trials are being delivered by the Department of Human Services.
The Minister’s press release in February 2019, advised that:
The trials, as well as existing assistance offered by a number of organisations, will be independently evaluated by health and human services consultancy Australian Healthcare Associates (AHA). This evaluation will inform future policy considerations and guide the implementation of long-term models of support.
The evaluation objectives are to:
The evaluation will involve extensive consultation (through surveys, interviews and site visits) with the service providers delivering the trials, consumers/family members engaging with services, and other stakeholders. AHA will also explore other system navigation models (in aged care or other relevant sectors) that are operating in Australia and internationally.
Older people make up a significant and increasing proportion of Australia’s population. Providing quality aged care for an ageing population, poses important economic and social challenges for society.