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Preparing for an ACAT Assessment - Home Care Assistance Sydney East

Preparing for an ACAT Assessment

| Amanda Payne | ,

Have you been referred for an ACAT Assessment but are unsure what to expect?

The Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT) not only identifies your care needs but also discusses various care options you might not have considered. This free assessment takes about 45-75 minutes and is conducted at your home. You are encouraged to have a family member, friend, or carer present for support.

If you need an Auslan interpreter or translator, inform the assessor when scheduling your meeting, and they will arrange it for you.

Care options discussed may include:

  • Home Care
  • Short Term Care
  • Aged Care Homes

Ensure the team understands your current living arrangements and future needs by being open and honest. This is a positive step to getting the care you need.

Preparation Tips:

  • Have two pieces of ID ready, including your Medicare Card.
  • Gather any referrals from your GP or other healthcare providers.
  • Prepare contact details for your GP and other healthcare providers.
  • Note any support you currently receive.

To maximise your assessment:

  • Prepare a list of questions in advance. If you have researched aged care options, have any brochures or information on hand.
  • Print copies of your questions for your family member or carer to tick off during the meeting.

Example Questions:

  • Are there any service providers that cater to my cultural or religious needs?
  • Are there providers who speak my native language?
  • What local services are available, and are there waiting lists?
  • What support is available for my carer?

ACAT assessments can be organised urgently within 48 hours if needed, but typically take up to six weeks to arrange. Usually, one person, often a Registered Nurse or GP, will visit your home for the assessment.

On the Day:

  • You will be asked for consent to be assessed and to have those involved in your care contacted.
  • You may need to fill out forms, but no immediate decisions are required. Speak up if you feel uncomfortable.

Assessment Topics:

  • Medical history and current needs
  • Daily routine and activities
  • Health and safety concerns
  • Current and future support needs (e.g., shopping, showering, cleaning)

This information helps ACAT determine the best care direction and identify relevant service providers.


  • You will receive a copy of your ACAT Assessment within two weeks, detailing the outcome, reasons, recommendations, and how to appeal if needed.
  • If moving into an Aged Care Home, you will need this report.

For More Information: Call the National Aged Care Advocacy Line on 1800 700 600 (freecall) or visit the Older Persons Advocacy Network website.

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