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Premium Room Service Charges

On this page, you’ll find Information for residents and consumers regarding the new rules related to the charging for premium room services in aged residential care facilities.

From 1 July 2014, older people considering moving into residential care will have greater clarity around when a facility may charge a resident for a premium room or bed, when standard ones are not available.

These changes affect only those who have been assessed as needing aged residential care and who move into a residential care facility on or after 1 July 2014. Residents who are already in a facility are not affected until such time as the resident wishes to move to a premium room.

If you, or someone you know, is affected by these changes, please read or pass on the information in the linked documents below, which set out the changes in more detail.

In 2013, the public was consulted on whether District Health Boards should fund premium-only facilities. The outcome of the consultation was that premium only facilities were not supported.  However, the reality is that such facilities do exist and are increasing as part of overall sector development. Hon. Jo Goodhew, who was then, Associate Minister of Health, asked District Health Boards, Aged Residential Care providers and consumer groups to come up with pragmatic solutions to premium charging that are, on balance, fair to all parties.

Key principles accepted by all parties were:

  • The need to ensure that all older people who are assessed as requiring Aged Residential Care will be able to access care, regardless of whether they wish to pay additional charges.
  • The need to always have ‘local’ availability of beds, without an additional charge.
  • The principles need to be enduring - that is, no detailed schedules which simply enable people to work around the principles. This applies to the provider, the funder and to the older person.

All parties have developed and agreed rules for how residents will be charged, or not, for premium rooms, or additional services. These have been included in the 2014-15 version of the Age Related Residential Care (ARRC) Agreements, a ‘contract’ between District Health Boards and Aged Care providers for providing residential care, and came into effect on 1 July 2014.

Premium room service charging resources include:

  • a fact sheet that answers questions about when a facility may charge a resident for a premium room, when standard ones are not available.
  • a flow chart that allows you to work through the decision-making process.
  • a fact sheet about the 10 km rule.
  • a spreadsheet for calculating the distance between facilities.