Bonus payments for aged care employees 

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23 April 2020

The Commonwealth Government has announced additional funding of $444.6 million to support aged care providers, residents, staff and families, including bonus payments to employees.

Building on measures announced last week, the new package will include:

  • $234.9 million for a COVID-19 ‘retention bonus’ to ensure the continuity of the workforce for aged care workers in both residential and home care.
    • This will mean a payment of up to $800 after tax per quarter – paid for two quarters – for direct care workers, including personal care workers, registered nurses, enrolled nurses and allied health.
    • Two payments of up to $600 after tax per quarter – for two quarters – for those who provide care in the home.
    • Payments will be delivered to providers to pay their workers and casual and part-time workers will be paid a pro-rata rate.

Payments are expected to be made in June and September for the preceding three-month period. Further details will be advised in due course.

Workers who are unable to attend work because they have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or who are in isolation may qualify for Sickness Allowance (or JobSeeker payment) if they do not have any employer leave entitlements, such as sick leave, and they meet general eligibility requirements.

Young people under the age of 22 who are unable to attend work because they have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or who are in isolation may qualify for Youth Allowance if they meet the same requirements.

Further details of the temporary funding package include:

  • $78.3 million in additional funding for residential care to support continuity of workforce supply.
  • $26.9 million for a temporary 30 per cent increase to the Residential and Home Care Viability Supplements and the Homeless Supplement. This includes equivalent viability funding increases for National
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Flexible Aged Care Program providers, Multi-Purpose Services and homeless providers.
  • $92.2 million in additional support to home care providers and organisations which deliver the Commonwealth Home Support Programme, operating services including meals on wheels. This will include services for people in self-isolation such as shopping and meal delivery.
  • $12.3 million to support the My Aged Care service to meet the surge in aged care specific COVID-19 enquiries, allowing for additional staff to minimise call wait times.

Additional fact sheets released by the Department of Health now include: