Enteral feeding supplement for aged care
Approved residential and home care providers can get this supplement to help with the costs of enteral feeding. Find out more about enteral feeding, whether your care recipient is eligible and how to apply.
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This supplement is for providers of:
What is the supplement?
The enteral feeding supplement is a primary supplement. This supplement supports residents who have a medical need for enteral feeding.
View the current supplement rate in the Schedule of Subsidies and Supplements.
A higher enteral feeding supplement is available on a case-by-case basis.
You receive this supplement when you support a care recipient who is prescribed enteral feeding.
Enteral feeding is where a resident gets nutrients through a tube in their nose, stomach or small intestine. The supplement is not payable for dietary formulas that are taken orally, used as food supplements, or administered in addition to food by mouth.
To claim the enteral feeding supplement on behalf of a care recipient, you will need:
- a doctor’s (not a dietician’s) written certification that the care recipient has a medical need for enteral feeding
- a doctor’s or dietician’s written certification that the dietary formula prescribed is nutritionally complete
- details of the care recipient’s particular enteral feeding requirements, which can be in their written certification, care plan or hospital discharge papers, or dietician’s enteral feeding instructions
Higher enteral feeding supplement
A higher enteral feeding supplement is available when the cost of administering enteral feeding is 125% of the standard supplement or more.
This might happen when the care recipient needs:
- more formula because they have a larger than average build or need to put on weight
- a more expensive formula to meet medical needs — for example, a person with diabetes may need a more expensive formula with more nutrients or calories
- a higher number of bolus feeds per day
- a formula to be administered over time, or a thicker formula — this means they need a mechanical pump (they may also need a flexitainer)
The higher supplement is not available when the higher cost is due to more expensive supplies.
Other government payments
A home care recipient who uses enteral feeding may also be eligible for the Essential Medical Equipment Payment.
Those eligible for the enteral feeding supplement may no longer be eligible for state and territory government aids and equipment schemes.
How to apply
Apply for the enteral feeding supplement online with Services Australia.
You can return the form and supporting evidence by:
- emailing Services Australia
- posting to one of the addresses on the form
The enteral feeding supplement does not carry across providers. You will need to make a new application for each eligible resident, even if their previous provider received the supplement.
The supplement will be paid from the date you receive approval. Notification of approval will be on your Medicare payment statement.
Payments may be backdated to whichever date is the latest, of either:
- the date of medical certification
- the date the person entered care