Respite Care – A Viable Alternative for Elderly Australians

When we think of the terms “aged care” or “nursing home”, we typically picture a permanent state of affairs; one that usually involves the very emotional decision to place an elderly loved one who is no longer able to care for themselves into an aged care facility.

Whilst increased competition from a myriad of providers has undoubtedly lifted the standards of the local aged care industry in recent decades, many decision makers such as the adult children of elderly Australians still baulk at the thought of removing their mum or dad from the comfort and familiarity of their family home. For permanent carers of the elderly, this decision can be particularly fraught as their commitment and sense of duty means they often have little or no personal time for themselves. This is where the increasingly popular option of Respite Care enters the picture as a viable alternative to permanent residential care (I.e. living in an aged care facility under the supervision of registered nurses) or keeping a loved one in their traditional home.


The many benefits of respite care

So what exactly is respite care you may be asking? Also known as “short term care”, respite care as described by the federal government’s My Aged Care website, is an arrangement within the aged care industry whereby elderly individuals are able to stay in a residential care facility for short periods of time on a once-off or regular basis. Respite care places are generally for 1 or 2 weeks at a time and give carers of the elderly a welcome break from the constant demands and responsibilities of their caring duties.

On the other hand, these short breaks give the elderly a welcome change of scenery from the familiar surrounds of their family home, whilst allowing them the opportunity to socialise with like-minded peers and participate in community activities, strengthening their mental alertness and overall sense of wellbeing. Other common examples of respite care include adult children placing their elderly parents in an aged care facility for a few weeks whilst they enjoy a much anticipated overseas holiday, or what is known as “transition care” whereby an elderly individual who has just been discharged from hospital is placed in short-term residential care so they can receive focused treatment such as physiotherapy and speech therapy as they readjust to regular life.


Respite care at Japara

As one of Australia’s largest aged care providers, Japara is pleased to offer the option of Respite Care to the general community through our aged care facilities in Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia, Queensland and Tasmania. Once your loved one is placed in one of our respite care beds, they will enjoy the full range of amenities and services available to our permanent residents including 24 hour care from fully-qualified, registered nurses. The cost of residential respite care at ACSAG is based on the regular daily fee charged for a permanent bed, although government regulation stipulates this cannot be more than 85% of the single basic aged pension. It’s also worth keeping in mind the Australian federal government does provide subsidies for respite places for families without the financial means to pay for it themselves.


Japara aged care facilities offering respite beds

Please see below for a full list of the Japara facilities across Australia that offer respite care options for the elderly and their loved ones:


For more information on Japara, our respite care options and the high quality aged care services we provide across Australia, please visit us at or call us today on (03) 9649 2100 for a friendly chat with one our staff.

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