"Goods and Services Provision and Case Management."

About: HammondCare At Home

(as a relative),

Dear Mr Martin,

Thank you for your update on services offered in my wife's package. We would however like clarification of several elements.

Goods and Services Provision:

Recently an amount of $9853. 00 was provided from my wife's package for the purchase of beds. Prior to the purchase we personally sourced and found a suitable supplier, provided all details to my wife's Case Worker who then completed the deal with supplier. In this case would a 10% fee of $985. 30 been charged to my wife's account? If so the fee would appear exceedingly excessive for the amount of work done by your department.

It also appears that you have a locked in arrangement with certain suppliers, notwithstanding the fact that certain items may be available from other suppliers at a much cheaper rate. For example when a drop down rail was purchased for our bathroom we could have purchased it for $100 less than was charged through your regular supplier. A more flexible attitude to purchasing would make available funds in account go somewhat further in those cases where clients have the capacity to source items from alternate suppliers.

We have always assumed that the administrative cost of purchasing necessary items is covered by the case management fee of 24%.

Case Management:

In my wife's circumstances is it possible to justify the fee of 24% ?  Despite my wife's mobility and medical problems we are both of sound mind and are currently well able to manage our personal and financial affairs. Should my wife's needs change at any time we would contact her Case Worker. In the meantime I understand that only an annual re-assessment and review is required in which case in our particular circumstances it would appear difficult to justify the fee.

Your reply to our concerns will be appreciated.

Thanking you.

Responses

Response from David Martin, HammondCare at Home We have made a change

Dear Fee clarification,

Thank you for your feedback and suggestions concerning recent care activity for your spouse. You have highlighted several issues which have given me the opportunity to reflect on the HammondCare At Home fee arrangements, and I hope the following information serves to clarify both the current situation, and also our intentions for changes following your valued feedback.

Firstly, I note your comments about the recent letter I sent out concerning the proposed 10% fee for the provision of goods and services. While this activity represents a significant amount of time for HammondCare staff to undertake and customise for each client, I have listened to you and other clients in recent weeks regarding the potential impact of this charge, and a desire from clients to maximise the amount of their home care package funding available for care delivery hours.

Consequently I have decided that we will not proceed with our proposal to charge a separate fee for goods and services provision. Our letter will therefore be adjusted to reflect that our 24% Case Management Fee will be inclusive of the expertise and attention of our care co-ordination and management staff and systems, unlimited access to our 24/7 HammondCare Support service, access to pastoral care services, the provision of up to two hours clinical nursing per week, and now also the administration costs associated with the provision of goods and services required to deliver care needs. Our new contract with clients also includes the “Going to Stay At Home” training program and access to a HammondCare exclusive VitalCall emergency response service at lower weekly monitoring cost than if you organised this yourself.

Secondly, in relation to our suppliers and your comments relating to competitive pricing, I will pass this information on to our procurement team. Their role is to ensure all suppliers are appropriately qualified, credentialed and insured, and that we and our clients are receiving the best possible pricing and quality on comparable items.

Thirdly, Case Management covers a wide range of direct and indirect professional activities which may (or may not) be needed from time to time, such as in your circumstances. Unlike other providers, HammondCare has chosen to employ, train and maintain a wide range of salaried professional and experienced people (working under our Missional Values) to have care co-ordination and response services “on hand” at all times for clients and their families. This means we can respond immediately when needed and adjust quickly if circumstances change.

Case management and care co-ordination may include initial, triggered, and ongoing care and service assessments, referrals and access to professional networks and advice on issues such as complex care, dementia, allied health, and palliative care services, care and budget planning processes, government regulated services and processes, information, services & equipment sourcing and provision and pastoral care support (to name just a few). While these services may not be needed by yourself at the present time, HammondCare’s approach to care means that unlike other providers they are available on hand, when needed, for a fixed “up front” fee.

In closing, caring for your spouse is our privilege, and I value your time taken and the feedback you have provided, and assure you this effort is resulting in improvements for our service, not only for yourselves, but all HammondCare At Home clients.

Regards,

David Martin

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