Government support for providers and workers

We provide support to Australian Government-funded aged care services (residential and in-home care) in managing COVID-19 outbreaks. Read about the supports for the sector in 2024 and how we support your outbreak management planning.

Aged Care Outbreak Management Supplement

The Aged Care Outbreak Management Supplement funds approved aged care providers. It replaces the previous COVID-19 grants application process and is now active.

This supplement contributes to the cost of planning for and managing outbreaks, including COVID-19 and other infectious diseases. The funds can be used for the purchase of rapid antigen tests (RAT), personal protective equipment (PPE) and associated workforce requirements.

First payments have commenced, with the annual amount weighted over 11 months from 1 February 2024 to 31 December 2024.

You will receive an annual amount of $941.35, which equates to:

This assumes the bed or place is filled for the full period throughout 2024.

There is no need to apply – all eligible providers will be paid this supplement automatically:

  • Residential aged care providers will be paid through the Services Australia regular monthly aged care payment processes.
  • MPS providers will be paid through the Department of Social Services funding system.
  • NATSIFAC providers will be paid through existing funding arrangements.

This approach to funding streamlines payment arrangements, and moves to a more business-as-usual model for managing outbreaks.

See the supplement rate in the Schedule of Subsidies and Supplements for Aged Care.

Surge workforce program

The surge workforce program will continue in 2024 to help providers manage COVID-19 outbreaks and other non-COVID-19 emergencies, to ensure high-quality care.

This includes:

  • supporting aged care homes impacted by an outbreak of COVID-19 and experiencing critical workforce shortages
  • continuing support for at-risk providers experiencing outbreaks of COVID-19 or other emergencies especially for rural, remote and First Nations services
  • time-limited support, that can be rapidly deployed to assist providers where resident safety is at risk and all other avenues for staffing have been exhausted.

If you wish to access the surge workforce support, you must first exhaust all your existing partnerships and recruitment channels.

We consider requests on a case-by-case basis. The availability of surge workforce support is dependent on the availability of staffing resources.

You can request these supports by emailing us.

Personal protective equipment and rapid antigen test kits

From 1 May 2024, providers need to source PPE and RAT kits through their own commercial suppliers. Supplies can no longer be requested via the My Aged Care portal. 

Contact us for any queries.

Infection prevention and control

Infection prevention and control (IPC) measures will continue and include:

  • access to IPC resources and online training
  • surveillance and monitoring activities
  • research and evaluation into existing IPC processes, including the IPC Lead role.

2023 COVID-19 Aged Care Support Program Grant applications are now closed

Residential and home care service providers can no longer apply for the 2023 COVID-19 Aged Care Support Program Grant. Applications for the grant ended on 3 April 2024. 

The conclusion of the grant will support providers to transition towards managing the costs of COVID-19 outbreaks as part of normal business.

Ad hoc grants for Commonwealth Home Support Program providers

We fund ad hoc grants for Commonwealth Home Support Program providers who need extra support to respond to unforeseen and exceptional circumstances.

Aged care grants contact

Email us for information if you have questions about aged care grants.

Mental health supports

We provide grief and trauma support for people in the aged care sector who have been affected by COVID-19, through:

The support includes improved advocacy assistance as well as grief and bereavement counselling.

Free webinars are available on grief and trauma:

Visit Head to Health for information about mental health and digital support.

A range of digital and telehealth support services are available for help with mental health during the pandemic, including vulnerable people and those with severe and complex needs.


Publications and fact sheets


For more information, watch webinars:

Stay informed

To stay up to date on aged care and COVID-19:

Find the latest advice and resources in your state or territory from your local public health agency.


Aged Care COVID-19 enquiries

Residential aged care providers can contact us to request surge workforce support.
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