Protecting Older Australians: COVID-19 Update 16 April 2020

What’s new: FAQs for Workforce Support, Dementia free information and training, CHSP social support groups still on hold and COVID-19 tests and capability: Clarification on POCT

Date published:
Health sector

Thank you for your continued efforts to protect our most vulnerable Australians against COVID-19. The service you provide has never been more important.

Today, we have further information regarding the support available to you and your workforce, some assistance from Dementia Training Australia and some important reminders.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Workforce Support

Detailed FAQs are available to assist providers to understand what support is available when and the eligibility criteria for each measure.  This follows on from yesterday’s item regarding the further rollout of the Government’s workforce support measures.

The FAQs cover:

  • Temporary Surge Workforce Support
  • Emergency Response Teams (ERT)
  • Remote Locum Workforce Support
  • COVID-19 Aged Care Support Program

In relation to the COVID-19 Aged Care Support Program, the grant is open now and the application form can be accessed on GrantsConnect.

Dementia: Free, Fast Information and Training

It’s important that the health and aged care workforce feel well informed, safe, and educated during COVID-19. To help ensure people living with dementia receive high quality support, Dementia Training Australia has produced two new resources:

  • COVID -19 An Informative Resources Guide : practical information links on COVID-19 including tips for supporting people with dementia.
  • Dementia Discovery: micro-courses (as quick as 15 minutes) giving introductory level education about dementia, including communication strategies in care settings.

Dementia Training Australia is funded by the Australian Government.


To help prevent the spread of COVID-19, there are restrictions on non-essential gatherings and visits to vulnerable groups. From 23 March 2020, all non-essential gatherings were suspended. As previously advised, if you provide Social Support Groups and group activities, these should be suspended until further notice.

CHSP providers should consider providing alternative approaches to delivering face to face group social support activities, including social connection by using FaceTime, Zoom or Skype or by establishing online social groups.

CHSP providers that deliver multiple service types may also wish to consider re-directing their funds to other non-face-to-face activities and support services through the use of Flexibility Provisions.


In the newsletter issued on 9 April 2020, there was a section noting concerns on the use of Point of Care rapid testing kits (POCT) to test for COVID-19 in primary care and residential care environments.

It is important to clarify that the advice referred specifically to concerns around serology POCT (rapid point of care lateral flow devices to detect antibodies to SARS-COV-2), not to POCT in general.


Coming Soon

  • PPE Resources Pack
  • Respite update
  • Flu vaccination Update

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