3414.0 - Guide to Migrant Statistical Sources, 2011 (Edition 2)  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/03/2011   
   Page tools: Print Print Page Print all pages in this productPrint All



Home and Community Care Program Minimum Data Set (HACC MDS)


The Home and Community Care Program (HACC) has been in operation since 1985. It provides funding for services which support people whose ability to continue to live at home is at risk, in order to enhance their independence and avoid their premature admission to long-term residential care. The Home and Community Care Program Minimum Data Set (HACC MDS) is a national data collection that collects information from HACC-funded agencies about the amount and types of assistance provided, and details about clients (which include care recipients and carers).

The data collection is conducted separately in each state and data are sent to the Department of Health and Ageing (DoHA), which consolidate and publish national statistics on home and community care recipients. The Commonwealth and state and territory governments use this information to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of HACC services, assist in planning, and support decisions for the care of the frail aged, people with disabilities and their carers.


The scope of the collection includes home and community care service providers and the consumers of these services, who received funding under the HACC program and who reported to their funding departments during the reference period.

The Home and Community Care Act 1985 states that the program shall be directed towards assisting persons living in the community who, in the absence of basic maintenance and support services provided or to be provided within the scope of the program, are at risk of premature or inappropriate long-term residential care. These include:

  • frail or at-risk aged persons, being persons with moderate or severe (profound) disabilities
  • younger disabled persons, being people with moderate or severe (profound) disabilities
  • such other classes of persons as are agreed upon by the Commonwealth Minister and the state Ministers
  • the carers of those persons.

HACC services can be offered to people on the condition that the specific service cannot be provided by the person, a carer and/or other support person or through other government funding, and the person is living in:
  • their own home
  • a retirement village, independent living unit, self care unit, boarding house, group/community housing in the community or in an aged care complex
  • unstable housing circumstances (such as in the case of transient or homeless people)
  • other arrangements not excluded under sub-clause 5(3) of the HACC amending agreement ('excluded services').

Services which are excluded from the scope of the collection are:
  • accommodation (including re-housing, supported accommodation, and aged care homes or a related service)
  • aids or appliances (wheelchairs, crutches, etc.), and
  • direct treatment for acute illness (including convalescent or post acute care) except for basic maintenance and support to people within the target population following an acute care episode.


Data items which describe the care recipient and their circumstances:
  • Date of birth
  • Sex
  • Country of birth
  • Main language spoken at home
  • Indigenous status
  • Living arrangement (i.e. whether the client lives alone, with family members or other people)
  • Accommodation setting (i.e. the type of place in which the client lives)
  • Government Pension/Benefit status (i.e. if in receipt of a Commonwealth Government pension or other benefit)
  • Australian state or territory identifier
  • Suburb/Town/Locality
  • Postcode
  • Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) card status
  • Functional status
  • Functional status—additional items.
  • Existence of carer (i.e. whether a client receives care assistance from another person)
  • Source of referral (i.e. person or organisation who referred the client to the agency)
  • Date of last assessment
  • Main reason for cessation of services

Information about the carer (if one exists):
  • Carer—existence of
  • Carer residency status
  • Relationship of carer to care recipient
  • Carer for more than one person
  • Date of birth
  • Sex
  • Country of birth
  • Main language spoken at home
  • Indigenous status
  • Australian state or territory identifier
  • Suburb/Town/Locality
  • Postcode.

Data items which describe and/or quantify the assistance to the client:
  • Primary type of assistance received
  • Amount of assistance received in terms of time (measured as hours and minutes) for the following:
  • Domestic assistance
  • Social support
  • Nursing care at home
  • Nursing care at a centre/other setting
  • Allied health care at home
  • Allied health care at a centre / other setting
  • Personal care
  • Respite care
  • Other food services
  • Assessment
  • Case management
  • Case planning/review and coordination
  • Home maintenance
  • Counselling/support, information and advocacy
  • Counselling/support, information and advocacy (carer)
  • Amount of assistance received in terms of quantity (measured as whole numbers) for the following:
  • Meals delivered at home
  • Meals delivered at a centre/other setting
  • Transport
  • Formal linen services
  • Amount of assistance received in terms of cost for home modification which is paid for from the agency’s HACC funds. (These costs may include both the labour costs and the materials cost or only some part of this.)
  • Total assistance with goods and equipment received

  • Country of birth is coded according to the Standard Australian Classification of Countries, (cat. no. 1269.0), Revision 2.01
  • Main language spoken at home adapts the Australian Standard Classifications of Languages, 1997 (cat. no. 1267.0) to accommodate a 2-digit naming code

  • Australia
  • State and territory
  • Australia Post postcode


The Department of Health and Ageing publishes data for all states and territories in their publication 'HACC Annual Report' and 'HACC MDS Annual Bulletin' which are available from the department's website at www.health.gov.au.

More detailed HACC data may be provided upon formal request, subject to the HACC MDS Data Access Protocol. For further information, including data request forms, see DoHA's website at www.health.gov.au.


Contact the Department of Health and Ageing website for further information.