ELDERLY people are at risk of being charged for home care services they are not receiving, an Orange carer has warned.
Catherine Cooper said her mother, Frances Willott, accessed home cleaning and shopping services last year from Ngangana Aboriginal Home Care, run by Australian Unity.
Ms Cooper said care workers began arriving outside agreed times, or not at all, but Australian Unity continued to take money from her mother's pension between May and August.
"They were coming when they wanted to, they were ringing me at 10pm saying the next morning they would have a service for my mother, it's not good enough," she said.
"She was still paying the money a couple of months after she stopped getting the service, they were still billing her."
When the cleaning and shopping did not happen, Ms Cooper said the responsibility fell back on her and it fractured her relationship with her mother.
More recently Ms Cooper's aunt, Lorraine Parkes, asked for a similar service to Ms Willott with Ngangana, but again the worker did not turn up.
They're setting them up to fail.Catherine Cooper
Ms Cooper said she contacted Australian Unity to register complaints, but it was difficult to find someone to speak to and there was no follow-up.
"They say they'll get back to you, but they don't," she said.
"There's no one to complain to but they don't mind taking your money."
She said moving to a mainstream service, rather than an Aboriginal service, and a My Aged Care package both involved waiting lists and questioned how the aged could live independently at home without the support they needed.
"They're setting them up to fail," she said.
A spokesman for Australian Unity said the Calare and Aboriginal Home Care Ngangana branches mostly delivered federal government-funded services, but declined to comment on Ms Cooper's family circumstances.
"Unfortunately, we can't provide specific details on any particular case without the consent of our customers due to privacy legislation but we actively encourage our customers to provide their feedback to us," he said.
"We are committed to our customers and offering the best quality of in-home support."
The spokesman said quality of care provided in customers' homes was the organisation's primary focus.
"We strive for continuous improvement and every complaint relating to poor delivery of home care services is treated seriously and thoroughly investigated," he said.
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