Residential aged care workers

When you get vaccinated, you are protecting yourself and the people you care for.

Why you need to be vaccinated

It is mandatory for residential aged care workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment. 

All states and territories have mandated COVID-19 vaccination in residential aged care through public health orders.

The public health orders define which workers the mandate applies to and any limited exemptions that may apply.

Mandatory COVID-19 vaccination applies to full time, part-time and casual residential aged care workers, volunteers engaged by a facility, and students on placement.

Read the latest on mandatory COVID-19 vaccination in residential aged care, including state and territory public health orders.

Why your employer needs to know your vaccination status

Residential aged care workers are required to notify their employer of their COVID-19 vaccination status under state and territory public health orders on mandatory vaccination in residential aged care.

Your residential aged care service is required to keep records and report on the number of residents and workers who have received a COVID-19 vaccination.

This information is used to assess your employer’s compliance with mandatory COVID-19 vaccination requirements as outlined in the public health orders in each state or territory.

Read more about mandatory COVID-19 vaccination reporting.

How to prove your vaccination status

There are two options for you to provide evidence of COVID-19 vaccination in Australia:

  1. A COVID-19 Digital Certificate – for individuals who have received all required doses of a vaccine as approved for use in Australia.
  2. An Immunisation History Statement – which displays all vaccinations or medical contraindications and authorised exemptions, including COVID-19, that have been reported to the Australian Immunisation Register.

Read the fact sheet on how residential aged care workers can prove their COVID-19 vaccination status.

Where you can get vaccinated

Residential aged care workers have priority access to the Comirnaty (Pfizer) and Spikevax (Moderna) COVID-19 vaccines, regardless of age.

This includes contractors and volunteers engaged by residential aged care facilities, allied health professionals who provide on-site services, and students on placement in aged care facilities.

Read the fact sheet on COVID-19 vaccination for workers.

Talk to your facility or employer about which of the below options are available to you:

  • Onsite clinics at your workplace:  Second dose clinics for workers are being delivered by Commonwealth vaccine providers, primary care providers or aged care providers.
  • Dedicated vaccination hubs: These hubs are located near residential aged care facilities and delivered by Commonwealth vaccine providers. 

You can identify yourself as an aged care worker to get priority access to a COVID-19 vaccine of your choice at:

  • Primary care clinics: including general practices, Commonwealth vaccination clinics (GP respiratory clinic), or Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services.
  • Pharmacies
  • State and territory run vaccination clinics

You can book an appointment at a clinic near you via the COVID-19 vaccine clinic finder.

Call the Helpline on 1800 020 080 (select option 4).  The dedicated COVID-19 Vaccine Helpline can answer any questions you may have about vaccination and can help you book a vaccination appointment. 

COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. If you have any questions or concerns talk to your doctor.

Information about the safety of COVID-19 vaccines is available in many languages.

Available vaccines

The Comirnaty (Pfizer) and Spikevax (Moderna) vaccines are now available to all people aged 12 years and over through all Commonwealth vaccination channels, including primary care clinics.

This means people aged 60 and over now have choice of vaccine; previously they were only eligible to receive the Vaxzevria (AstraZeneca) vaccine.

The Vaxzevria (AstraZeneca) vaccine remains available to all people aged over 18.

It is important to get vaccinated now with the COVID-19 vaccine available to you.

Vaccination will help protect you, your family and those you care for against hospitalisation and death from COVID-19.

What to take to your vaccination appointment

You can provide the following documents to confirm you require a priority vaccination:

  • proof of identity (e.g. driver's licence, passport, birth certificate)
  • proof of employment (e.g. one of the following):
    • letter from your employer confirming have priority access
    • current work ID card or payslip showing you are currently employed at a residential aged care facility
  • Medicare card if you have one. You are still eligible to get priority vaccination even if you do not have a Medicare card.

Support to get vaccinated

Casual residential aged care workers are eligible to receive via their employer:

  • $80 per dose for offsite vaccination
  • a day of paid leave ($185) if unwell after vaccination and you have no other leave entitlements.

These payments are made possible via the Residential Aged Care COVID-19 Employee Vaccination Support Grant program through to 29 October 2021. Applications for the grant program are made by residential aged care providers.

You can discuss the grant program with your aged care facility.

Resources for Workers

The following resources are available:

These information sheets are available in several languages.

Last updated: 
15 October 2021

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