In our conversations with clients, we often hear the same questions. We spoke to the Department of Health to get some answers to the top three AN-ACC questions you’ve asked. Here is what we heard.
Is Allied Health included in the 200 care minutes obligation?
The care minutes measure announced in the 2021 Budget is intended to support facilities move towards providing an average of 200 minutes of care per resident per day (including 40 minutes of Registered Nurses (RN) care per resident per day). The required minutes will be case-mix adjusted for each facility depending on the needs of their residents, and will become mandatory from October 1st 2023, with $3.9 billion in additional funding provided from October 1st 2022 through AN-ACC to assist providers to meet this requirement. From a practical perspective, case-mix adjustment means that average care minutes will vary between individual facilities and change over time as the resident profile changes.
The recommendation from the Royal Commission was that the 200 care minutes include care time from RNs, Enrolled Nurses and Personal Care Workers only. The Government has accepted the Royal Commission’s recommendation. The department will be closely monitoring information reported in the Aged Care Financial Reporting on care hours and costs (which will include information on the provision of allied health services to residents) in the lead up to, and following the implementation of, the AN-ACC model in October 2022.
Can you confirm if the new AN-ACC class will take effect from the day the assessment is completed, or back dated to the day the Department is contacted?
Assuming the current Aged Care and Other Legislation Amendment (Royal Commission Response No.2) Bill passes, amendments to the Classification Principles 2014 will be progressed so that a new classification resulting from a reclassification request will have effect from the date of the request for reclassification.
What will be the appeals process for providers to challenge an AN-ACC classification?
Amendments to the Aged Care Act proposed in the current Bill will permit providers to request that the Secretary reconsider a decision to classify a care recipient (including initial classification decisions and classifications resulting from reclassification requests).
A reconsideration request must be made within 28 days of the date of the decision in question. Provision for reconsideration requests will be built into the My Aged Care provider portal. The Act permits the Secretary to charge a fee to reconsider a decision (as is also the case under existing ACFI arrangements).
A reconsideration request will trigger a new assessment (which will be conducted by a different assessment organisation to the one that completed the original assessment wherever possible) and the results of the new assessment will be used in the reconsideration decision. That decision will be limited to confirming, varying or setting aside the original decision.
The reconsideration decision will have the same date of effect as the original decision. A provider will be able to appeal a reconsideration decision to the AAT.
To get support and expertise to help you manage the transition to AN-ACC, talk to us about our AN-ACC program management solution.