Carers play a valuable role in the community by providing care and support to family and friends who are frail aged, disabled, or have a mental or physical illness.

Respite care is an important support service for carers as it allows carers to have a break from their usual care arrangements. Respite care is provided in a number of settings to allow greater flexibility for carers.

Under the Act, respite care can be provided in an Australian Government funded aged care home. Outside of the Act, respite services are available under the National Respite and Carers Program (NRCP) and the Commonwealth HACC program. Funding is also supplied by the Australian Government for Multi-Purpose Services to provide respite care in rural areas.

NRCP services are targeted to support carers of frail older people, younger people with disabilities and people with dementia. The NRCP contributes to the support and maintenance of caring relationships between carers and the people for whom they care, by providing respite, facilitating access to information, and providing other support for carers.

Respite is delivered in a number of settings to provide more options for carers.

These settings include:

  • day respite in community centres and residential homes;
  • respite in the home – both during the day and overnight;
  • overnight respite in community cottages;
  • community outings – either group or individual;
  • mobile respite;
  • employed carer respite;

The Carers Services & Supportare funded under the NRCP to provide information and respite services. The Centres help carers to take a break by arranging short term and emergency respite, and by linking carers to support services available in their local area.

The Support for Families & Carers provides short term emotional and psychological support services to carers, in order to reduce carer stress, improve carer coping skills, and facilitate wherever possible, the continuation of the caring role.

Counselling can be offered in different ways to suit the different needs of carers including individual face-to-face sessions, web-based, telephone or group counselling sessions all being offered. Funding also supports provision of specialist advice to carers and guided referrals to other support services.

Please use our Business Directory Search facility to find ‘Respite Care’ service providers in your local area.