Our home is where we our most comfortable. It is where we eat, sleep, take shelter and spend time with our loved ones. It’s no wonder most elderly Australians want to stay living at home for as long as possible. However, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, in 2018, there were more than double the amount of people in residential aged care facilities than there were people accessing home care services. Afea’s Mission is to Empower People, and with this in mind, we are driven to see as many elderly Australians residing in their own homes as possible. The aim of this article is to educate the community about the alternatives to residential aged care, which may not always be necessary.

The benefits of older people staying in their homes and receiving daily home care versus moving to residential aged care are things Afea Carers see daily. Mental wellbeing, routine and comfort, and maintaining a level of independence and connectedness with the community are all benefits of receiving one-on-one supports through home care.

We form attachments with our homes, both from a psychological and social perspective, and maintaining these attachments ensures better physical and mental health, according to the Productivity Commission Report Housing Decisions of Older Australians.

Home care from trusted providers such as Afea offers an alternative to residential care and long stays in hospital, which in some cases can be avoided.

We even care for people in residential homes, which can be a good option for when loved ones aren’t able to visit as often as they’d like. Our Carers may have a cup of tea and a conversation with the client or take them for a walk around the nursing home. Our Carers are empathetic, and they genuinely care about spending time with their clients, helping them feel connected and engaged.

According to the Federal Department of Health, the number of Australians over the age of 65 is predicted to increase from 3.8 million to 5.2 million by 2027, and we are living on average 30 years longer than we did a hundred years ago. This will mean an increasing growth of demand for aged care services. Therefore, it is important that families are aware of their options before it becomes apparent that help is needed.

There is growing awareness of the available options and more elderly Australians are successfully staying in their own homes, however families are often unsure of when to start talking about accessing home care. It is important to have the conversation early, and to identify a trusted home care provider such as Afea, which is certified by My Aged Care to offer Home Care Package services.

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