2018-19 acar opens

it’s that time again

This update highlights some of the elements related to the residential aged care application process. The forms are streamlined however the process is more competitive than it has ever been. The impetus is to be able to evidence need and demonstrate the compelling reasons your organisation and service is best met to serve the needs of our elder Australians. In the 2018-19 ACAR, nationally, applicants can apply for:

  • 13,500 residential care places
  • 775 short-term restorative care (STRC) places
  • up to $60 million in capital grants

The indicative timeframe:

  • Opens 2 July 2018
  • Closes 11.59PM AEST 10 August 2018
  • Results expected April 2019

Priority, but no guarantees

The department will give priority to assessing and allocating places to suitable applications for residential care places to services located in regional, rural and remote areas. You are not however guaranteed places simply because you are located in a regional, rural or remote area.

The level to which applications are sought will now be given a category of prioritisation, from Category 1 (highest priority) down to Category 6 (lowest priority).

The assessment and allocation of places will start with the most highly prioritised areas and work down from Priority 1 to Priority 6. All Priority 1 applications will be assessed first and places allocated. Then all Priority 2 will be assessed and places allocated, and so on. This means that if all places are allocated, the lower priority ranked applications may not even get read.

Regardless of the above, you may still submit an application in any area and/or for any group/issue for which you can make a case for need. Note also that around 70% of the Australian population live in metropolitan areas.

Other factors

What makes an application suitable:

  1. Prioritisation
  2. Any targeting identified – consider your service model and customer base
  3. The need in the area – you will need to provide strong evidence
  4. A case built by the application for need – again, this will need to be supported by strong evidence
  5. Other applications received in the same area
  6. Current levels of service provision
  7. Demographics
  8. Other information that may be relevant to individual areas

Applications specifically addressing Special Needs Groups (defined in the Act) and Key Issues (particularly dementia and residential respite) are encouraged from all locations; metropolitan, regional, rural or remote.  Likewise, applications for mainstream metropolitan services are still encouraged.

organisational factors impacting an application

The department will consider the number of provisionally allocated places you hold, and the progress made in operationalising the places. The aim is to reduce the number of unoperationalised places. Therefore organisations with high numbers of provisionally allocated places need to consider their capacity to undertake all works prior to submitting additional applications.

The department will also consider the number of offline places you have as well as your occupancy levels.

As in every year, an organisations compliance status will have bearing on the suitability of an application. A poor record may adversely impact the competitiveness of your application.

bear in mind

Word limits must be maintained.

Letters of support from your local Member of Parliament, Senator or any other Parliamentarians are not considered as part of the ACAR decision making process.

Don’t forget to attach all requested documents or your application will be incomplete and therefore unsuccessful. Only include attachments that have been specifically requested. Other attachments such as letters of support will not be considered.

As of this year no individual feedback will be provided by the department in relation to ACAR applications.

As always it is the responsibility of the Approved Provider to read the Essentials Guide. You are required to certify that you have done so. If you are using external consultants this does not absolve you from reading the Guide.

Send the application, that is preferably no greater than 12MB, in Word format.

Good luck!