Aged Care is just one part of significant government spending on older Australians.
Government spending in health, aged pension and aged care increases dramatically as Australians pass age 65.
And it is not just for the few. About 3 million Australians are over 65 and 2.25m of them receive a full or part pension. This means that more than 70% of Australians over 65 get an income from the government.
Put another way, 10% of Australians get an aged pension from the government.
But there is more to it than this.
In being eligible for a Centrelink Aged Pension, older Australians are also eligible for a preferential Medicare support, and full access to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).
This is a big story.
Australians older than 75, account for 4 times as much Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme support as the population average, and nearly 3 times as much Medicare support.
Another big story is that government currently pays about 70% of residential aged care costs. In 2012, the average amount the government paid per bed was $51 400.
So how easy is it to get the money?
Lots of paperwork, complex eligibility, changing rules.
Centrelink, Medicare, Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme - in getting this support from the government, older Australians have to deal with multiple arms of the government.
Each arm of the government comes with a complex and extensive system of eligibility tests to deal with. And the rules always seem to be changing.
When going into residential aged care, there is also the difficulty of choosing the right provider. With different types of care and cost, this creates more confusion at a difficult time.
Then there is policy change. This is the big sweeping stuff, not the tweaking.
In July 2014, the Government changed the way it looks at how older Australians can afford to pay for care.
Simply put, the government wants to pay less for residential aged care. Of course the costs of providing care are not going down, so the money has to come from somewhere.
Who pays more?
Well, those that can afford to.
If this is not the answer you were looking for, then you are not used to the challenges of working out just how much aged care will cost.
Confused or not, many older Australians are going to have to contribute more to the cost of aged care support from July 1 this year.
Later Life Advice and Living Longer, Living Better
Later Life advice has performed extensive analysis on the changes.
This analysis is from one perspective, and will remain from one perspective only - the consumer.
Please sign up on our website to be kept informed as Later Life Advice outlines key components of the new system over the coming weeks.
If going into residential aged care is on your radar this year, this is a story you will want to be following.
For most people, the move residential aged care is not a decision, it's a necessity, and decisions need to be made fast.
Later Life Advice - right now
Later Life Advice helps you understand aged care costs, and we can do it very quickly.
Let us help you make better decisions around the costs of residential aged care.
Please stay in touch by signing up for updates, and please let us know if we can help.