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We've prepared a list of answers to frequently asked questions to support our team members, clients and community to find reliable information during the COVID-19 pandemic.

We regularly review and update this information. If you have question or concern we haven't addressed please contact us.

General health advice

For information regarding COVID-19 we recommend you start with these sources of information:

  • Coronavirus health information hotline: Call 1800 020 080 (Australia wide) or 1800 675 398 (within Victoria)
  • For a summarised version of what you need to know about COVID-19: This guide from health.gov.au is a useful resource.

Last updated 3 February 2023

Symptoms of COVID-19 can range from mild to severe. Some people recover easily, and others get very sick very quickly.

If you test positive you may experience:

  • fever
  • coughing
  • sore throat
  • shortness of breath

Other symptoms include:

  • runny nose or congestion
  • headache or fatigue
  • muscle or joint pains
  • nausea or loss of appetite
  • diarrhoea or vomiting
  • temporary loss of smell or altered sense of taste


For more information about symptoms, go to the Department of Health's website.

Last checked 3 February 2023

Vaccination

InLife follows Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) vaccination guidelines and recommendations. See the latest information.

Last updated 3 February 2023

Yes. If you’ve had COVID-19 infection you can get vaccinated three months after your infection.

Government advice for people who have recovered from COVID-19 is the infection provides some natural immunity but will decrease over time. Vaccination is important to get maximum protection against further COVID-19 infection.

For more information, visit getting vaccinated against COVID-19

Last checked 3 February 2023

There’s plenty of ways to book, with plenty of appointments at your local pharmacy or GP.

Last checked 3 February 2023

Yes! Our friendly Ops team are more than happy to help. Email [email protected] or call 1800 INLIFE (1800 465 433).

We’ve also prepared a guide on how to upload your proof of vaccination to Employment Hero.

Last checked 3 February 2023

The COVID-19 vaccine is available free to everyone living in Australia, even if you don’t have a Medicare card.

Last checked 3 February 2023

If you’ve had a COVID-19 vaccination, you’ll see this recorded on your immunisation history statement.

You can get your immunisation history statement using either:

  • your Medicare online account through myGov
  • Medicare mobile app.

If you can’t use Medicare online, your vaccination provider can print your immunisation history statement for you.

You can also call the Australian Immunisation Register and ask them to send your immunisation history statement to you. It can take up to 14 days to arrive in the post. You can then provide this statement to InLife.

Please see our proof of COVID-19 vaccination Q&A for further information.

Last checked 3 February 2023

It’s important you go to reputable sources for trusted information. Many websites can look official and important, but the information may not be reliable.

Look for a “.gov.au” on the end of a website url to know that you’re visiting an Australian government website. For example: health.gov.au

For information on vaccines, start with the Department of Health’s website.

Last checked 3 February 2023

Working with clients

Masks are no longer required if you're working in a client's home, but are still recommended as a safety precaution.

If a client is comfortable with you removing your mask, you're welcome to take it off if you prefer.

Masks are still recommended if you're working indoors at care facilities (such as shared living), as part of vulnerable setting requirements. Anyone visiting an indoor area needs a mask, too.

Last checked 3 February 2023

We're regularly screening with RATs for everyone working in shared accommodation or concierge services, in line with government recommendations. If you’re working in these settings, we recommend you test using the RATs provided every Monday and Thursday.

If you do test positive, please contact your coordinator as soon as possible. They are available to support you.

Last checked 3 February 2023

Sometimes. Masks are still needed in sensitive settings, like care facilities. Masks are not required in a client’s home, but are still recommended.

Read our quick reference guide of what PPE is required in different circumstances. If you need additional PPE, please contact your InLife Coordinator.

Watch this video for instructions on how to correctly don (put on) and doff (take off) a surgical face mask.

Please see our FAQ section on hygiene precautions for further information.

Last checked3 February 2023

Do not go to a client’s home if you are feeling unwell. Consider whether you feel unwell before you leave for work each day. Let your coordinator if you have the following symptoms before work or if you develop them at work:

• Fever (temperature of 37.5°C or higher)

• Fever, chills or sweats, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, runny nose and loss or change in sense of smell or taste

Staying home if you feel unwell combined with general hygiene and physical distancing is the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

If you have any of the symptoms above, you need test for COVID-19.

Last checked 3 February 2023

General cleaning is important for stopping the spread of COVID-19. Sanitise your hands when you enter the house and aim to clean frequently touched surfaces before starting your shift unless the client urgently needs assistance.

Coronaviruses can survive on surfaces for many hours but are easily killed by cleaning and disinfection.

Below is a guide for regular cleaning of frequently touched surfaces:

  • Clean door handles, tabletops and light switches mechanically using detergent solutions (as per manufacturer's instructions) or detergent disinfectant wipes (so long as mechanical cleaning is achieved).
  • General surfaces and fittings should be cleaned when visibly soiled and immediately after any spillage.

If you notice the client does not have suitable cleaning products, please contact your InLife coordinator.

Last checked 3 February 2023

If you are working with a client and they are unwell, you should:

  1. Call 000 for urgent medical help if the symptoms are serious, such as difficulty breathing
  2. Advise your client to put on a face mask, if they are not already wearing one.
  3. Support your client to get tested - either RAT or PCR via a GP.
  4. Contact your client's InLife coordinator to inform them the client has symptoms and any actions taken. The coordinator will provide further advice on what you need to do.

InLife has developed a rapid response protocol for our coordinators to follow if a client is suspected of contracting the virus. This includes providing all PPE required to safely care for the client throughout their isolation and making sure that all assistants involved are aware of and trained in all procedures.

Last updated 3 February 2023

Excellent hand hygiene is one of the best ways to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Hand sanitiser should be used on entering and leaving the client’s home. We have secured ongoing supplies of hand sanitiser to be provided at clients’ houses, including travel size bottles for staff to use when needed in their daily activities.

Regular and thorough hand washing with soap and water should also occur throughout the shift. Gloves are only necessary for clients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19, or for any personal care that requires the use of gloves. Gloves must be worn for care that may involve exposure to blood, body fluids, touching mucous membranes or non-intact skin.

For the latest advice on the PPE you need to wear while at work, please see this resource from DHHS, read our quick guide to PPE (updated March 2022) or check with your coordinator.

If you need any PPE, please contact your coordinator.

Some hand washing tips:

Watch this video from the World Health Organisation to ensure all parts of your hands are clean after using hand sanitiser or washing with soap and water.

This video from John Hopkins Hospital also provides an example of how to properly wash your hands.

Please also see our FAQs about wearing masks.

Last checked 3 February 2023

Suspected or confirmed COVID-19 infection

If you are working with a client and they are unwell, you should:

  1. Call 000 for urgent medical help if the symptoms are serious, such as difficulty breathing.
  2. Advise your client to put on a face mask if possible, and provide assistance if needed.
  3. Support your client to get tested - either RAT or PCR via a GP. If you don’t have access to a RAT, contact your coordinator.
  4. Contact your client's InLife Coordinator to inform them that the client has symptoms or has tested positive and any actions taken.

InLife has developed a rapid response protocol for our coordinators to follow if a client is suspected of contracting the virus. This includes providing all PPE required to safely care for the client throughout their isolation and making sure all assistants involved are aware of and trained in all procedures.

Providing support for clients in this situation will provide some challenges, and we will work with the client, their families and DHHS on the best way to manage continued service provision. Circumstances will differ from client to client, and we will discuss the process with you prior to any scheduled shifts.

Last updated 3 February 2023

InLife will not force you (or anyone) to work a shift with a client if you don’t feel comfortable doing so. However, we do have a duty as individuals and as a community to ensure the vulnerable among us are supported and cared for. The services InLife provide are critical to ensuring clients receive the support they need, and we hope you will be able to help us provide these services to clients throughout the pandemic.

Last checked 3 February 2023

If you have any of the symptoms of COVID-19, isolate and get tested as soon as possible with a RAT, or PCR test via your GP if you can’t access a RAT. Contact your coordinator if you don't have access to a RAT.

Contact your coordinator as soon as possible to advise them of the situation and they will stay in contact with you.


Last updated 3 February 2023

Exposure and special leave benefits for assistants

If you have any of the symptoms of COVID-19, isolate and get tested as soon as possible with a RAT, or PCR test via your GP if you can’t access a RAT. Contact your coordinator if you don't have access to a RAT.

Contact your coordinator as soon as possible to advise them of the situation and they will stay in contact with you.

Last updated 3 February 2023

The federal government has introduced a support payment for workers in high-risk settings like disability support.

The lump sum payment is to help during the time you can’t work because you’ve tested positive for COVID-19. If you’ve lost at least 8 eight hours or a full day’s pay, but less than 20 hours, you can claim $450. If you’ve lost 20 hours or more, you can claim $750.

There is also the Victorian government’s Sick Pay Guarantee. If you’re sick or injured, or caring for immediate family or someone you live with, you may be able to claim up to five days’ sick leave annually. This applies if you or a loved one is sick for any reason, it’s not just for COVID-19.

If you’ve contracted COVID-19 as a direct result of your work with InLife and don’t qualify for either of these payments, exceptional circumstances may apply. If you have any queries please contact your Coordinator or [email protected] as soon as you can.

Last checked 3 February 2023

Other questions

As per our standard working arrangements, if a client cancels a shift with less than 24 hours’ notice or is not present for you to do a rostered shift, you will be paid for the full length of that shift. If a client cancels a shift and you are notified at least 24 hours in advance of a cancellation, the special leave policy will not apply.

We are committed to supporting all our assistants throughout this time, so please contact your coordinator for any specific help you may need. This could include seeing if we can find other work for you, particularly if the client does not require shifts for an extended period of time.

Last checked 3 February 2023

The health and wellbeing of all InLife employees is important to us, so please let us know if there is anything specifically you are worried about and we will do our best to help.

Our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provides counselling support.

Other professional support services that can help dealing with the challenges everyone may face during the pandemic are listed below.

Last checked 3 February 2023

If you have a question, we're here to help. Start with the Department of Home Affairs website and contact Human Resources and we'll get the information you need.

Last checked 3 February 2023