Aged care workers eligible to receive $800 bonus payment from today

Bonus payment March 1

Aged care workers are asking when they will receive their bonus payment, after the government announced in February that staff in the sector would be eligible for two cash payments of up to $800 in total.

A member of HelloCare’s Aged Care Worker Support Group asked the group: “Has anyone got their bonus yet?”

The post attracted 125 comments from fellow members, all of whom are aged care workers, with many commenting on the insufficiency of the payment and lamenting the poor pay and staff shortages in aged care.

Providers can apply from March 1

The bonus in question was announced by the government on February 1, and amounts to two payments of up to $800 in total. 

A spokesperson for the Department of Health told HelloCare when aged care workers receive their payment will depend on when employers submit their application for the funds. 

Employers are required to lodge an application for the bonus with the Department. They can do this from March 1. Providers will then receive a grant funding agreement. Once they return their grant funding agreement, the Department will pay the employer.

The spokesperson said aged care employers are “encouraged” to pay the bonus to staff when they lodge their application with the Department.

The government has made three earlier bonus payments to more than 230,000 aged care workers over the course of the pandemic.

The latest bonus will be paid to care and support workers in government-subsidised home care and to direct care workers, food preparation workers and cleaners in residential aged care.

The amount of the bonus will depend on whether the worker is working in home care or residential care, and will be prorated based on the highest number of hours worked in a single week out of the four weeks leading up to those dates.

Source: Department of Health.

Aged care workers call for permanently higher wages

Members of the support group responded to the question saying they have not yet received their bonus, which is not surprising because applications can’t be lodged yet.

But many lamented the inadequacy of the payment, saying aged care workers need higher pay permanently and more staff employed in aged care.

Another said the bonus is “an insult to every age care worker. I’d give up this payment for staffing ratios and a pay rise that actually reflects what we do.”

A handful of support group members said their employer had increased wages when staff were short. One said her employer also hired extra staff.

“Our facility has given us a 25% pay increase the last two fortnight’s pay and hired extra staff from an agency. We have COVID cases and we are run down, exhausted.” 

“Our management listened to us… What a difference. We can actually spend that time with a resident … It is also nice looking at our payslip – just wish this was something every week.” 

She added, “This extra 25% should be what residential workers get every time.”

The unions have put forward a case for aged care workers to receive a 25% pay increase. The matter is currently before the Fair Work Commission, which is looking at the value of aged care work.

Though the aged care worker told HelloCare the extra pay will continue until staff no longer have to wear full personal protective equipment, the additional staff are no longer on site. 

“We’re all back to being run down, exhausted,” she said.

She has been working in aged care for 17 years, and over that time her pay rate has risen from $17 per hour to $23 per hour. 

“My 21 year old earns more than me,” she said.

Aged care workers “backbone” of aged care 

Minister for Health and Aged Greg Hunt said the payments acknowledge the response of the aged care workforce to the ongoing challenges of the pandemic.

“The government is providing these bonus payments to aged care workers in recognition of their dedication in continuing to care for our vulnerable older Australians during these difficult times,” Minister Hunt said.

“These workers have been caring for those who have been most at risk through the pandemic and their dedication has been outstanding.”

He added, “These payments will also be an extra bonus for those who recently retired but have responded to the request to return to work during the recent workforce shortages.”

Minister for Senior Australians and Aged Care Services, Richard Colbeck, said, “Aged care workers are the backbone of the care and services provided to older Australians.”

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  1. It will be good to get the payment but I don’t think it is fair that you pay tax on the payment as we have on past payment.

  2. The system needs to be permanently fixed. Resident/staff ratio need to be implemented and wages raised to reflect the care and dedication of the aged care workers be it out in the community or in nursing homes.

  3. This government has exploited you all to the max. They care nothing for you or the vulnerable elderly you care for (if that wasn’t true, Richard Colbeck would not be the minister).
    The only way you will get parity with other health workers is to unionise. Let your union do the hard fighting needed to bring change. And there is another reason for your pitiful pay; the cost discourages you from unionising.

    1. I have worked in aged care for many years and I always lived being there
      But now I am so exhausted and run down
      We have had 2 things from our employer $50 voucher and some chocolate here and there.
      This bonus will not what we want we need HELP with more staffing and a permanent wage increase NOW
      People are leaving aged care at a very rapid pace and at the end of the day it is the residents that miss out
      STOP PUSHING US UNDER THE TABLE
      PULL YOUR HEAD OUT OF THE SAND AND FIX AGED CARE NOW

  4. I do not think the Government actually know what the different aged care workers actually do. I am a Lifestyle worker and no one in facility has more contact with residents in their role we have all residents throughout facility in our care, now we also set up zoom, facetime, medical appointments on zoom and sanitise areas for activities, what residents will be handling and the residents hands before and after all activities. We serve meals to tables and clean up after and assist with feeds we are the go to for all things extra required, short of staff we do morning teas etc. We did not receive last bonus and looks like we miss this one to even with doing many other workers jobs in facility. No one has more contact with residents this is very disheartening and disgusting, we choose this job to make thing better for residents and we do this as we are told with the appreciation of residents and families but these slaps in the face make you feel totally forgotten and ignored and lifestyle workers are feeling covid more than most, we deal with their worries, sadness, fears, we are the shoulder to cry on and we make them laugh we also in our own time shop for them. Makes many of us wonder what’s the point as we have been excluded from all payments like all we do is nothing and does not matter.

    1. Clare, I am horrified if we Lifestyle are not included! It was a slap in the face when others got approx $3,000 in the last lot! I will seriously rethink my career if I don’t get this payment as it means my company did not include me and other lifestyle and laundry staff in their list for the grant. The company isn’t paying it! It shows how they ‘value’ us in the big picture. It’s a sorry state of affairs.

  5. So not only do we pay tax but probably like last time they will put it on to a pay so you pay more tax ( apparently that’s how they had to do it ) employer has let us know today that they are looking at applying in the next week with payment mid April … definately not paying when they apply and going on past form we will be one of the last paid .

    1. I would like to know if our agencies out there will pass it onto us just a thought it’s time to look after the aged care sector and it’s workers

  6. I’ve been told today that you aren’t eligible unless you work with HCF clients only nothing about that in the information

  7. will be good to get the payment but I don’t think it is fair that you pay tax on the payment as we have on past payment.

  8. It will take more than 2 x one off payments of $400 to secure my vote for the next Federal Election. Bring it on.

  9. I work in homecare and my employer has just told me that I don’t get the bonus as I’m under CHSP. this is so unfair as I work just as hard as the carers in residential and other home care. Not happy

    1. Hello Jill,

      What does CHSP stand for.

      I’m assuming as a private 24 hour carer I would also miss out on this bonus.

      Thank you
      Tanja

  10. I encourage every one of the government to spend one week under cover in a age care facility and they would be shocked when they see what’s going on remember one day it could be one of you in a care facility the system is broken it’s a money making business and there is no recognition for the carrers even so they literally do anything as there is no job description anymore every cent we get more the more staff they cut the more work we get it’s very sad how peoples effort is valued

  11. I love my job and my residents but am being asked to do more and more (example; being asked by the Hospital close by for aged care workers to look after the elderly there as ‘they’ are run off their feet) When we are working in the Facility and ‘being run off our feet’ we are told in no uncertain terms we cannot get anymore help. So this payment doesn’t do anything except get taxed because health love to double or triple tax you. Our good workers are leaving, leaving us underappreciated, underpaid and overworked. When are things going to change? Management doesn’t seem to think we deserve anything, after all they are getting well looked after

  12. Great! Another Slap in the face!!! I’m a maintenance man and through the whole pandemic I’ve been loaded with extra work, from ordering stock, chasing stock, loading wings and areas for covid preparations, I had to work in lifestyle, even cooking in the kitchen when we had no staff .

  13. I have worked in Community Care settings for over 10 yrs. Over a year ago I continued to work in Aged Care as a Sole Trader.
    How’s a Sole Trader supposed to apply?
    Was told by the Dept that my Application was declined as ‘Mable’ need to apply on behalf of the Support Worker. Mable has responded by saying that they don’t have the authority to apply as they are not our Employer, they are a caring platform connecting Client’s with Worker’s.
    So am interested if other Sole Trader Support Workers are in the same boat??

  14. I work in an aged care facility as a maintenance officer.

    Am I eligible to receive the bonus?

  15. I work for Australian unity & they haven’t paid bouns yet,reckon they Are holding it to make interest on it. Said we are only getting paid for clients that are on packages, where it’s meant to be from what I can gather how many hours you have worked a week? Please help us front line workers

  16. We still haven’t received our first payment the second payment will be on the 28/4 and we still waiting on our first one🤦🏽‍♀️

  17. Hi,
    Ive been working in Aged Care as a Nursing Assistant/ Carer for 35 years. I already missed out on 3 Gov bonuses . When i asked for the reason – I was told that it is Federal Government Bonus to staff working in Aged Care looking after older people. I felt horrible after hearing that stayement. I work in Aged Care Sector , looking after older people (65-102 years old) 5 evenings a week, neglecting my family , friends, my well-being. Yet being told I dont deserve the bonuses makes me wonder how many other people like me are working for half the pay doing everyting thats possible to make sure each and everyone ot the older Clients have respectful, clean, safe and healthy stay in an Aged Care Facility are being discriminated and refused the bonuses? Will I be getting these two $400.00 bonuses or will i be told again I will not get them ??? Who has the right to say people I look after are not Aged Care Clients in a Aged Care Facility waiting for their depature?
    Maybe I should have started my Comment with :
    “Dear Prime Minister of Australia, I will be very vigilant on 21st of May 2022 when make a voting decision this time. Yours Sincerely Anna , the Carer/ Nursing Assistant

  18. When do we get it we think our Employee has it getting interest on it before they pay it to us

  19. Can you please advise if working in an agedcare facility as an admin worker do we qualify. Just as overworked as everyone else in the industry . Did not get last one.

  20. Good morning
    I was working in February and April, as I had lefted to urgency of mother gone pillatve.
    But I didn’t leave until August
    Not sure weather I qualify or not

  21. I cannot ‘for the life of me’ see why a ceo, a lawyer, a politician, a company boss, a government official; get/earn what they get/earn. Oh, and their god given perks. This is So Wrongful.. but, always has been. You’ve got those that earn and go beyond required efforts and the ,”others” … Hey.. who reckons Scomo ‘Earnt’ the dollars for the, well all or any the positions he had. baaa baaa @#806640

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