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Notice given 18 October 2002

819  Senator Bishop: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs—

(1) In total, and for each region, how many assessments were conducted for access to the Veterans’ Home Care (VHC) scheme for each month during the following financial years: (a) 2001-02; and (b) 2002-03 to date.

(2) In total, and for each region, how many applications have been rejected each month.

(3) In total, and for each region, how many accepted veterans and widows have had services: (a) cancelled; and (b) reduced, in each month.

(4) What was the: (a) projected expenditure; and (b) actual expenditure, for the program for each quarter since its inception.

(5) How many clients currently receive: (a) one service; and (b) more than one service under the VHC scheme.

(6) (a) How many clients have transferred from the Home and Community Care (HACC) Program to the VHC scheme; and (b) how many veterans who may be eligible for VHC remain in the HACC program.

(7) (a) How many service providers have had their contracts: (i) suspended, and (ii) terminated; and (b) how many service providers have withdrawn.

(8) What guidelines exist for agencies determining whether house maintenance can be made available under the VHC scheme or whether it ought to be provided only under the Home Maintenance Helpline service.

(9) (a) What are the current funding levels for each region; and (b) what were the funding levels in the 2001-02 financial year.

(10) If there were reductions in funding for the 2002-03 financial year, what were the reasons.

(11) In how many regions have home maintenance and gardening hourly allowances been: (a) reduced; and (b) eliminated in whole or in part.

(12) For the 2002-03 financial year to date, by region, how many applicants have been denied access to VHC and referred to HACC.

(13) For each region: (a) what proportion of: (i) 6-monthly, and (ii) annual, reassessments have been conducted on time; and (b) how many have not been done at all.

(14) For each region, how many clients have had services reduced without a reassessment during the 2002-03 financial year to date.

(15) Have criteria for assessment been altered since the program’s inception; if so, how.

(16) How many clients are currently on waiting lists in each region.

(17) (a) How many VHC clients have transferred to HACC; and (b) what financial adjustments between programs have been made.

(18) (a) How many clients in total have transferred from HACC; and (b) what adjustments have been made as a result of VHC funding.

(19) For each quarter since the program’s inception, what proportion of services have been for: (a) domestic assistance; (b) personal care; (c) home and garden maintenance; (d) in-home respite; (e) residential respite; and (f) emergency respite.

(20) How many veteran clients of the department received: (a) in-house respite; (b) residential respite; and (c) emergency respite, under the general Commonwealth respite programs for each quarter in the 2001-02 financial year and the 2002-03 financial year to date, as opposed to receiving those services funded under the VHC scheme.

(21) Has an interim report on the evaluation of VHC been received; if so: (a) what are its findings and recommendations; and (b) can a copy be provided.

(22) For each region, in how many instances have agencies declined to: (a) make assessments; and (b) provide services, for whatever reason, including remoteness.

(23) How many veteran clients of the department received personal care services from programs other than VHC in each quarter of the following financial years: (a) 2001-02; and (b) 2002-03 to date.

(24) How many veteran clients of the department availed themselves of services under the Home Maintenance Helpline service for each quarter of the following financial years: (a) 2001-02; and (b) 2002-03 to date.

(25) Given the original estimate of savings in the health program as a result of this program, what is the estimated reduction of those savings flowing from reductions of services below those assessed.

(26) (a) What were the average hours approved for each service in the VHC scheme as at: (i) 31 December 2001, (ii) 30 June 2002, and (iii) 30 September 2002; and (b) how many clients were in receipt of each service at those times.

(27) (a) What is the current fee paid to each agency for each assessment made; and (b) what other funding is provided to agencies for administrative overheads.

(28) (a) What is the current scale of charges for each of the services provided under the VHC scheme by providers managed by agencies; and (b) what is the equivalent scale for other programs such as respite and HACC.

(29) As at 30 September 2002, how many agencies have overspent pro rata on their allocated budget.

(30) How many agencies have reduced staff as a result of the reduced allocations.