by LINDA GERONIMO-SANTOS,
Solicitor NSW & WA
With the ageing population for Australians and overseas born Australians /migrants, the issue of care has been more vital. Family members are usually working/studying full time.
As costs of nursing homes facilities become more exorbitant and the available facilities do not meet the demand the carer’s visa may be the only plausible and efficient solution to the growing needs of the elderly Australians. While large companies have resorted to outsourcing their services, the nursing home services cannot be outsourced overseas because the need for care is here in Australia.
•HOW TO APPLY FOR A CARER’S VISA
The carer’s visa is a permanent visa. The requirements are stringent, as is the case with other migration visas.
•Sponsor for carer’s visa
Sponsor may be the person needing care, or a member of the household who needs the practical support of the carer to look after the welfare of a member of the family with a long-term medical condition.
•The person needing care must be examined by the Medibank Health Solutions, and must reach the health threshold that warrants the need for a carer under a carer’s visa.
•Sponsor has a long-term medical condition that means he/she cannot look after self in practical aspects of daily life, e.g. eating, showering, walking, toilet assistance, etc.
•The sponsor may not be the person needing the care. But the sponsor needs permanent or long-term practical support to help the sponsor and sponsor’s family care for a member of the family in their household with such a medical condition.
•The family of the sponsor cannot provide the practical daily needs of the person with a long term medical condition.
•The applicant for carer’s visa must meet the following requirements:
•The visa applicant must have a relative in Australia who needs assistance due to a long term medical condition.
•The relative has arranged for an assessment with Medibank Health Solutions.
•There is no one else in Australia who can provide the care and assistance so required.
•The visa applicant is willing and able to assist the Australian relative
•The Australian relative is willing to sponsor the visa applicant.
•ADDITIONAL GUIDES FOR CARER’S VISA APPLICATION
Despite meeting all the above requirements, the sponsor should have evidence that there is no member of the family who can provide the level of care he/she needs. This will include assessing the work/study timetables of all the immediate members of the family of the sponsor.
Reports from government authorities that assess the level of personal and health care required by the sponsor with the medical condition will be helpful. Medical reports from the treating doctor/s and from other medical/paramedical practitioners will also be useful.
It is a real issue for the sponsor and the sponsor’s family in Australia to meet the needs of an elderly relative with a long term medical condition, or a young one with special needs.
The cultural and language difficulties facing the sponsor/sick relative in dealing with nursing home facilities will be a paramount consideration. Elderly members of the family also face the insecurities of being with strangers, bereft of the comfort and warmth of family assistance and attendance. Thus there is a genuine need for carer’s visa to promote the long term welfare of elderly sick members of the family, or young members with disabilities and with special needs.
As the costs of maintaining nursing home facilities soar, the need for carers via the carer’s visa becomes more acute and necessary.