Consumer directed care

What is consumer directed care (CDC)?

Consumer directed care is the new model of providing care by offering consumers more choice and flexibility. Consumer directed care gives people who receive home care more control over the care and services package they receive, including how it is delivered and who provides it.

Home care packages are designed to help people who want to stay living at home for as long as possible and are provided on a consumer directed care basis. 

What consumer directed care involves

This means you get to work together with your service provider to develop your care plan and choose the level of involvement you have in managing the care services given to you.

Consumer directed care also allows you to see how your home care funding is being spent through your personal budget with a monthly income and expense statement. This may help you see if you are getting the best price or decide if you need to make your funding go further. 

Consumer directed care also ensure your service providers makes formal reviews to monitor your care and make sure that your package still meets your requirements.

If your needs have changed, you can undergo a reassessment to find out if you need to alter your package. If you cannot meet your care needs under your home care package budget, you may also need to be reassessed to see if you are eligible for a higher level of services. You may also need to use your own financial assets to cover the cost of your services.

History of consumer directed care

Consumer directed care for home care packages was first piloted by the Federal Government in 2010-11. From August 1, 2013, all new home care packages were then required to be delivered on a consumer directed care basis before being introduced for all packages from July 1, 2015.

In 2012, the Federal Government had identified the need to give people who receive care at home more control over their services under its Living Longer Living Better reforms for aged care.

From February 2017, consumer directed care will undergo further changes, with the funding for home care packages allocated directly to the person receiving care.

These packages will be portable so that consumers can change their service provider if they want to, and take their package with them if they move.

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A special thanks to our contributors

Caroline Egan

DCM Media, agedcare101

Caroline has a wealth of experience writing within the retirement and aged care sector and is a contributing journalist for the and agedcare101 blog and accompanying newsletters.

Ian Horswill


Ian is a journalist, writer and sub-editor for the aged care sector, working at The DCM Group. He writes for The Weekly Source, agedcare101, and the DCM Institute fortnightly newsletter Friday. Ian is in daily contact with CEOs of retirement living, land lease and the aged care operations and makes a new contact every week. He investigates media releases, LinkedIn and Facebook for a good source for ideas for stories.

Lauren Broomham

Retirement and Aged Care Journalist

Lauren is a journalist for, agedcare101 and The Donaldson Sisters. Growing up in a big family in small town communities, she has always had a love for the written word, joining her local library at the age of six months. With over eight years' experience in writing and editing, she is a keen follower of news and current affairs with a nose for a good story.

Jill Donaldson


Jill has been practicing as a clinical physiotherapist for 30 years. For the last 13 years she has worked solely in the Aged Care sector in more than 50 metropolitan and regional facilities. Jill has also toured care facilities in the US and Africa and is a passionate advocate for both the residents in aged care and the staff who care for them. She researches and writes for DCM Media.

Chris Baynes

DCM Media, agedcare101

Chris has been a journalist and publisher in the retirement village and aged care sectors for 11 years. He has visited over 250 retirement villages and 50 aged care facilities both within Australia and internationally. Chris is a regular speaker at industry conferences plus is a frequent radio commentator.

Annie Donaldson

Nurse and Carer

Annie has a long career in both nursing and the media. She has planned and co-ordinated the medical support from both international TV productions and major stadium events. In recent years she has been a primary family carer plus involved in structured carer support.