Respite care (also known as short-term care) is a form of care designed to support you and your carer. Respite care ensures that your care needs are supported while your carer has the opportunity to take a break and enjoy everyday activities.
Respite care can be provided by an approved home care provider or by a friend or family member.
Whether you need respite care for a few hours, days or even longer, respite care providers can cater for you depending on your needs, eligibility and the services offered in your area.
Respite care can be accessed within the comfort of your own home, in an overnight respite cottage, a day centre or even at a residential aged care home.
Other types of respite care include:
A respite care worker will provide care for you in the comfort of your own home.
- Centre-based day respite care
Centre-based respite care is run by trained respite workers and is perfect for attending social or recreational activities.
- Overnight or weekend respite care
A respite care worker will come you’re your home and stay overnight or you can stay in a respite house or respite cottage run by an approved provider.
- Community access respite care
Community access respite programs are beneficial because they provide social activities and experiences, encouraging a sense of independence and community. You will be accompanied by a care worker either individually or in a group.
Residential respite care is short-term respite care provided in a residential aged care home.
If you need emergency respite care you can contact your local Commonwealth Respite and Carelink Centre of 1800 052 222 (during business hours) or after hours on 1800 059 059.
The costs for respite care can vary depending on your circumstances and the type of help and care you need. A range of aged care services in Australia are subsidised by the Australian government, however you may be required to contribute to the cost of your respite care if your financial situation allows. Subsidised respite care is available through the Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP).
If you receive short-term respite care within a residential aged care home, you won’t need to pay an accommodation charge or a bond, but you will have to pay a basic daily care fee. The basic daily care fee for a respite resident in residential aged care is set at 85% of the single basic Age Pension.
You may also be asked to pay a booking fee. A booking fee is not an extra payment, but rather a pre-payment of your respite care fees. The fees you pay will be discussed and agreed upon between you and your chosen respite care provider.
If you receive respite care in an aged care home, you will need to be assessed by your local Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT/ACAS) to determine your level of care.
Click on your state below to begin your search for respite care providers: