Shared Caregiving Service Provides Round-The-Clock Assistance For Seniors In Community Care Apartments

As our population ages rapidly, Singapore needs to find ways to ensure all our seniors are well-taken care of and live out their golden years comfortably.

Enter a new public housing concept designed with the needs of seniors in mind – the Community Care Apartments in Bukit Batok.

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The Build-To-Order (BTO) project will come with an optional Shared Caregiving Service that may be subsidised as much as 80%.

The service primarily helps seniors move around, shower and dress, but other services that can be subsidised include meals, home care and housekeeping.

Community Care Apartments will foster kampung spirit

In a Facebook post on Monday (25 Jan), Minister for Social and Family Development Masagos Zulkifli said he visited an exhibition on the Community Care Apartments that day.

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They were planned based on seniors’ desire for communal living that can foster the kampung spirit, he added.

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The project also hopes to let seniors live out their golden years independently, but in communities they are familiar with.

Round-the-clock assistance for seniors with disabilities

To that end, the Shared Caregiving Service will provide round-the-clock help for seniors with disabilities who’re living in the Community Care Apartments.

According to the HDB website, the service covers Activities of Daily Living (ADL), including:

  1. Moving around
  2. Transferring from 1 place to another (for example bed to wheelchair)
  3. Washing
  4. Dressing
  5. Eating
  6. Using the toilet
  7. Medical reminders
  8. Assistance with simple errands

HDB elderlySource

Other add-on optional services are:

  1. Housekeeping
  2. Home delivery of meals
  3. Home personal care
  4. Social day care
  5. Laundry
  6. Medical escort and transport (MET)

Eligible seniors to pay only $190 for Shared Caregiving Service

Mr Masagos said essential services like the Shared Caregiving Service should be affordable and accessible.

Thus, the Government will provide eligible seniors with up to 80% subsidy on the monthly cost.

That includes the add-ons like meals and home care too.

Hong Kah North MP Amy Khor at a mock-up of a Community Care Apartment.
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Here’s the list of charges for these services.

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As the Shared Caregiving Service costs $950 per month, after maximum subsidy it would cost just $190.

Social day care could cost just $10 a day, and each meal just $1-$1.40 after subsidy.

Subsidies will depend on means testing

To determine who is eligible for the subsidy, as well as the amount of subsidy, the Government will use a household means test.

Some factors include:

  1. The gross income of the senior, spouse and all family members in the household
  2. Total number of family members in the household
  3. Annual value of the place of residence (if the household doesn’t have an income)

For more information, do check out go.gov.sg/subsidies-iltc.

Seniors 65 and above are eligible

Those aged 65 and above, with an average gross monthly household income not exceeding $14,000 will be eligible to apply for the new housing.

Only Singaporeans or families with at least one Singaporean may apply.

Leases ranging from 15 to 35 years – in 5-year increments – will be available to applicants, as long as it covers them and their spouse until they are 95 years old.

HDB elderlySource

Flats begin at $40,000 for a 15-year lease and $65,000 for a 35-year lease. Payment has to made in full with cash or via Central Provident Fund (CPF).

Including the subscription for the mandatory basic service package, which begins at $22,000, a 15-year-lease Community Care Apartment will cost upwards of $62,000.

Notably, these apartments cannot be resold or rented out. But owners can choose to return the flat to HDB and receive a refund on the value of the remaining lease.

The authorities have also added that seniors with more pressing care needs will be prioritised.

To be released in Feb BTO launch

The Community Care Apartments will be released in the Feb BTO launch.

Those interested in applying can check out the HDB website for more info, and make an appointment to visit an exhibition at the HDB Hub in Toa Payoh that will last till 31 Mar.

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According to Mr Masagos, there’s been “healthy interest” in the exhibition since its launch.

Essential care & support for seniors right at home

While many seniors prefer to live independently on their own, this may raise concerns on their safety and well being.

The Community Care Apartments solve the problem by ensuring that they get the care and support they need right in their homes.

Now with an 80% subsidy on care services, taking care of the elderly has just become much cheaper.

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Featured image adapted from Facebook and Facebook.