What is the Regional Assessment Service (RAS) for?
If you need to access basic Government-funded in home support under the Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP), you will need to be assessed by the Regional Assessment Service (RAS).
- Regional Assessment Service (RAS) assessments are for people who have lower care needs
- You are allowed to have a support person with you during the assessment
- A RAS assessment is free
The RAS ensures that the services you receive respond to you and your carers’ needs and support you in retaining or regaining skills that assist you in living independently at home and in your community for longer.
Generally, RAS is a service for older people who have lower care needs, but still require a little help around the home.
This assistance can range from house cleaning to support while shopping or even having someone come over to take care of your garden once or twice a week.
A RAS assessor is trained in identifying the best aged care services you will benefit from, as well as refer you on to CHSP services you require.
To receive a RAS assessment, you must be aged 65 years and over, or aged 50 years and over for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
What services does RAS provide?
These assessments identify your needs for support, including your carer, and the goals you wish to achieve that will help you reach independence and improve your overall wellbeing.
RAS allows for assessments to be undertaken independently from service provisions and the assessors will consider aged care options that will fit best with you and your carers’ goals.
Some services could include assistive technology, therapeutic interventions, community care services or other support organisations.
Additionally, RAS assessors liaise with service providers, General Practitioners (GPs) and specialists, and community support networks on your behalf to make sure your goals can be achieved.
The RAS also plans and coordinates the exit or transfer of services to other services if your needs increase. For instance, changing to Home Care Packages (HCPs) and/or moving into residential aged care.
The service also provides care coordination if you have multiple providers or more complex needs.
How the assessment works
After contacting My Aged Care, the information you provide over the phone will determine whether you require low-level support or higher care.
If they deem your care needs are on a lower level, My Aged Care will recommend a RAS assessor to visit and provide a home support assessment.
Your local RAS assessor will call you to organise a visit time and will undertake the assessment in your home.
Before your face-to-face assessment, you should make sure you have all the documentation and information prepared for the visit.
- A Medicare card
- A form of ID proof – like a driver’s license, healthcare card, passport or Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) card
- Copy of referrals from your doctor
- If you wish, ask a support person to be there for your assessment
- Any information about previous aged care services you have received
- Contact details for your GP or other health professionals
- Information on any support you receive from family, neighbours or the community
Some of the questions they will ask you will relate to your personal situation, lifestyle, and health, and will inquire into whether you are receiving any other types of support.
A RAS assessment is a free service from the Government.
You can have an assessment by yourself, or if you feel more comfortable, you can have the assessment with support from a partner, relative, or friend.
If you have a disability, communication difficulties or English is not your first language, an interpreter can be arranged for the assessment.
You will work with your RAS assessor to identify the best in home support plan for you which encompasses your needs and goals, as well as what services will best complement your plan.
After you have an assessment with a RAS assessor, you will receive a referral code which you will need when accessing in home services.
The RAS can also make a referral to a CHSP provider following a discussion about the availability of appropriate services and after an assessment with you about your preferences.
To find out if you are eligible for CHSP services, contact My Aged Care on 1800 200 422 to request a RAS assessment, or for more information, head to the My Aged Care website.
What help or services would you like around the help? Tell us in the comments below.
Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP)
Introduction to Home Care
ACAT/ACAS and Assessment
- Your Journey: