Date published: 
21 August 2020
Type: 
Newsletter
Intended Audience: 
Health sector

Today’s newsletter provides information on support for managing costs related to COVID-19 and details around CHSP support available for residents moving out of a residential aged care facility during COVID-19.

There are details on a statement from the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission on regulatory action taken with facilities in Victoria, as well as information on the second payment of the workforce retention bonus.

In the resources section there is a video message from the Victorian Commissioner for Senior Australians to all aged care workers, as well as a fact sheet from the Victorian Environmental Protection Authority to assist providers with clinical waste management.

We thank you for your hard work to protect older Australians and encourage you to share this newsletter with your colleagues and workforce.

Anyone living in an aged care facility, their family or representative who needs support should contact the Older Person’s Advocacy Network on 1800 700 600.

Support for managing COVID-19 related costs

Grant opportunities are available to assist aged care providers to manage the costs of being impacted by COVID-19.

The Aged Care Support Program (ACSP) aims to assist eligible providers, subject to direct COVID-19 impacts, to deliver continuity of safe, quality care for consumers. ACSP reimburses eligible expenditure incurred in managing direct COVID-19 impacts, up to a maximum grant value per service.

The Support for Aged Care Workers in COVID-19 (SACWIC) grant opportunity is designed to minimise the risk of an infection occurring in the aged care sector.

More information on these grants to assist you to determine if you are eligible to apply is available here: Support for managing COVID-19 related costs.

Information on CHSP support available for residents moving out of a RACF during COVID-19

There are two tiers of support available under the Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP) to support residential aged care clients who choose to temporarily move out of residential care due to COVID-19.

Tier 1 Clinical support for clients who relocate from a facility that is significantly impacted by COVID-19

Temporary clinical support (Nursing and Personal Care) is available to clients who have had to relocate from a significantly impacted residential aged care facility. This support is the equivalent to a Level 4 Home Care Package.

The client or their family can call OPAN on 1800 700 600 to discuss their care needs. OPAN will provide information on the services available, the process for transition to community care and can arrange for a referral to a suitable local provider to deliver clinical services in the home for up to eight weeks.

Tier 2 Entry level services for clients who voluntarily decide to return to the community

Clients of residential aged care facilities that are not eligible for the complex clinical support above, but still choose to return to the community, may contact My Aged Care on 1800 200 422. My Aged Care will provide information on the services available, the process for transition to the community. They can arrange for a referral to access some entry-level home support services (including Meals, Transport, Unaccompanied Shopping, Social Support Individual, Nursing, Personal Care and Allied Health and Therapy Services) for up to eight weeks through the CHSP.

More information can be found in the COVID-19 and the CHSP – Information for clients, families and carers fact sheet.

Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission statement on regulatory actions to support Victorian aged care homes during COVID-19

The Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission has released a statement on regulatory action they have taken in Victoria to minimise the risk of COVID-19 to staff and consumers.

The Commission has taken regulatory action in relation to a number of approved providers of residential aged care services experiencing a COVID-19 outbreak, following concerns identified about the serious impact of the outbreak on their residents, and failure to comply with the Aged Care Quality Standards. The regulatory instrument used – a “Notice of Requirement to Agree to Certain Matters” – sets out terms determined by the Commission that the approved provider must immediately implement.

The terms of the Notice in each case include a requirement for the approved provider to appoint an independent adviser to provide direction and advice to the approved provider to address the identified non-compliance at the service. Providers are also required to give close, ongoing attention to keeping residents and families informed about the regulatory actions under the Notice.

View the full statement.

Workforce retention bonus second payment

The workforce retention payments grant round has now closed. If you have missed out on applying please email grant.ATM [at] health.gov.au.

All information can be found at retaining staff.

The second payment in September is just around the corner. This will be paid automatically based on the first payment. Variations are only required if your payment amount would reduce by 10% or more. If applying for a variation, please submit a variation staffing profile spreadsheet and declaration no later than 4 September 2020 to acwr [at] health.gov.au

These can be found at the Variation Request and Declaration page.

The guidelines for this can be found at section 5.2 of the Grant Opportunity Guidelines.

Provider enquiries on the application may be submitted in writing to: grant.ATM [at] health.gov.au.

Resources