Arrangements for CHSP Providers in Relation to COVID-19
Written by Rosanna Commisso – Home Support and Partnerships Coordinator
Update from Health Department – Tuesday 31st March
- 95% of Health Dept staff will be working from home from Tues 31st March
- NO social support or group activities allowed – service providers are urged to come up with innovative ways to connect clients e.g. teleconference or online groups
A recent Dept. Newsletter (I highly recommend that you subscribe: https://www.health.gov.au/using-our-websites/subscriptions/subscribe-to-aged-care-sector-announcements-and-newsletters) contained the following:
“From 23 March 2020, all non-essential gatherings are suspended for four weeks. If you provide Social Support Groups and group activities, you should suspend them for four weeks. You can continue to support clients by re-directing their funds to other non-face-to-face activities and support services. Please communicate any change to clients and their carers and families as soon as possible.
Providers are encouraged to use their workforce creatively to respond to increasing demand for critical services, including using workforce that is underutilised (e.g. staff involved in group social support) towards other funded services (e.g. delivery of meals, phone based social connections), wherever possible.
CHSP service providers are encouraged to use the flexibility provisions to direct resources towards delivering critical services, such as ensuring clients have access to meals and groceries, undertaking welfare checks, and undertaking phone/video call social interactions with their clients.
Providers that have underutilised staff, and are not funded for services that are experiencing high and unmet demand, should seek to collaborate with other providers in their area – to potentially offer short-term staffing assistance, wherever possible.
It is important that staff be retained during this period. The department will take into consideration the current circumstances when reviewing acquittals data for 2019-20 and 2020-21, for example where funded outputs are not delivered, but funding is redeployed to other services that enable staff retention. All services provided direct to clients should be recorded in DEX.
CHSP service providers now have complete flexibility to re-allocate up to 100% of their funding between their funded service types in 2019-20 and 2020-21.”
Other important information
- Service providers are NOT to worry about outputs – they just need to do what they can
- Service providers MUST sign Extension Agreements & return ASAP to make sure that no provider is disadvantaged in regards to receiving payments so that they are able to pay staff
- If a staff member or a client has been diagnosed as having the CV-19 virus, please notify the Dept.
- Service providers are required to meet client needs as they arise in whatever capacity they can with the funding money they have been given. The Dept is providing 100% flexibility on how services are provided as long as costs are within the total value of funding agreement.
For more information, contact the Your Side Sector Support team.
Daily updates regarding COVID-19, for the health and aged care sector are provided here: