With changes to Home and Community Care Program (HACC) funding in the pipeline, members working in the program have expressed concern about the potential negative impacts of this model of corporatisation.

As part of the agreement between the Victorian and Commonwealth Governments to implement the National Disability Insurance Scheme, the management of the Home and Community Care (HACC) Program will be split. As a result, services for older people will be directly funded and managed by the Commonwealth Government.

This change will mean that when the Commonwealth Home Support Program is implemented, the block funding that currently characterises the HACC program will cease. Funding will instead be received based on clients “purchasing” services from providers.  Members have rightly raised questions about the potential impact on employment arrangements and security.

While the date of transition to the new system is yet to be set, we are seeking to ensure that the lines of communication between employers and the union are open. The VAHPA, with other relevant unions, has been in talks with Special Minister of State, Gavin Jennings and the Minister for Housing, Disability and Ageing, Martin Foley. Further, we are in the process of bedding down a regular consultative meeting with the relevant ministers to ensure that your voice is heard.

The VAHPA has written to all Community Health Centres about this issue and has invited constructive discussions at the earliest opportunity.  As the changes roll out we expect we will be involved in consultation processes to help ensure minimum disruption and uncertainty for members.  If you are working in Community Health and have concerns about this issue, please don’t hesitate to contact us.