Almost 2.65 million Australians care for someone with disability, a medical condition, mental illness or someone who is frail due to age.
The Australian Government helps carers remain engaged in the community, participate in the workforce and stay healthy while continuing their caring role through the provision of funding for a range of supports, services and financial assistance.
On 5 March 2018, the Australian Government announced funding of an additional $85.6 million over four years for the introduction of new services for carers. The new services form part of the new Integrated Carer Support Service model which provides access to early-intervention supports that are proven to improve long term outcomes for carers.
As part of the 2019-20 Budget, the Australian Government committed a further $84.3 million over four years for the provision of more services for carers and additional support for young carers.
On 15 May 2020, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Australian Government committed $3.5 million to provide additional support to carers of people with or at risk of a mental illness in 2020-21.
This funding takes the Australian Government’s overall investment to over $700 million, over five years, for the provision of improved services and supports for carers.
The introduction of the new Integrated Carer Support Service model (known as Carer Gateway) is the final stage of the Australian Government’s 2015 commitment to the development of an Integrated Plan for Carer Support Services.
Carer Gateway provides a range of tailored supports and services to help carers manage their daily challenges, reduce stress and plan for the future.
Current programs, services and payments available to assist carers are outlined below.
Programs and Services
- Carer Gateway
In-person and online supports and services for carers
- Young Carer Bursary Program
Bursary packages for eligible young carers aged 25 years and under
- MyTime Peer Support Groups for Parents of Young Children with Disability
An Australia-wide network of peer support groups for parents and carers of young children with disability or a chronic medical condition.
- Carer Payment
Income support payment for people whose caring responsibilities prevent them from undertaking substantial paid employment
- Carer Allowance
Income supplement for people who provide daily care and attention at home to a person with disability or a severe medical condition
- Child Disability Assistance Payment
Annual payment for Carer Allowance recipients, who care for a child with disability under 16 years
- Carer Adjustment Payment
One-off financial assistance to families in exceptional circumstances who do not qualify for Government income support payments.
- Carer Supplement
Paid to recipients of Carer Allowance for each person they care for.
Carers may also be eligible for:
- Bereavement Payment
- Pensioner Education Supplement
- Pharmaceutical Allowance
- Rent Assistance
To find out more about these payments you can:
- visit your nearest Centrelink office
- telephone 132 717
- visit the payments page on Centrelink's website
- learn about the Improved Assessment Process for Carer Payment and Carer Allowance
See General benefits & payments on our website.