COVID-19 Information and Supports
ACT GOVERNMENT COVID-19 INFORMATION AND RESOURCES
For the latest information on COVID-19 in the ACT visit the ACT COVID-19 website
ACT Government COVID-19 helpline
The ACT Government’s COVID -19 helpline 02 6207 7244 provides:
- support for the more vulnerable and isolated people in our community
- Support for those self-isolating or in quarantine
- Health and mental health advice and referrals
- advice and information about the ACT Government’s recent community and business stimulus packages
- advice on COVID-19 related scams
If you need support, please call the ACT COVID-19 helpline on 02 6207 7244
Getting vaccinated against COVID-19 is a safe and effective way to protect you from becoming very sick if you catch COVID-19.
The ACT Government has been working in partnership with the Australian Government to deliver a safe, effective and targeted COVID-19 vaccination program here in the ACT.
Women with Disabilities ACT (WWDACT) and ACT Health have created a video talking about the importance of getting vaccinated which is available on the WWDACT facebook page.
ACT Health has developed a social story for students with disability on COVID-19 vaccination, see COVID-19-vaccination-social-story.pdf (act.gov.au)
Vaccination Webinar for People with Intellectual Disability
The Australian Government Department of Health, supported by Inclusion Australia held a webinar to discuss the importance of getting a COVID-19 vaccine and answer questions from people with intellectual disability and supporters. A recording of the webinar is now available on the Department of Health website.
Down Syndrome Australia has developed a video on the COVID-19 vaccination, in partnership with the Department of Health.
How to book
COVID-19 vaccines are free for everyone aged 5 years and over.
Make a booking at:
- the Access and Sensory vaccination clinic
- a GP – use the vaccine clinic finder
- a pharmacy – use the vaccine clinic finder
If you need help making a COVID-19 vaccine booking, send an SMS with 'Hey EVA' to 0481 611 382.
EVA (Easy Vaccine Access) is a simpleâ¯callbackâ¯service to help you book a COVID-19 vaccination.
How to book if you don't have a Medicare card
You can get a free COVID-19 vaccine without Medicare using the Vaccine Clinic Finder.
The Access and Sensory clinic is located at the Weston Creek Community Centre and is open on Mondays and on Saturdays from from 8.30am to 3:00pm.
The Access and Sensory Vaccination Clinic is available to anyone who would benefit from a quieter environment, additional space, longer appointment time, or requires carer assistance, including people with disability, people with mobility limitations and people with mental health conditions.
View the Access and Sensory Clinic video at People with disability and disability care workers - COVID-19 (act.gov.au) as it walks you through each step of the COVID-19 vaccination appointment process, from arrival to exit, providing a first-hand look at what to expect when attending the clinic for a vaccination.
To make a vaccination appointment at the Access and Sensory Clinic, call the ACT COVID-19 vaccination booking line on 5124 7700 (select option 3) between 7am to 7pm, daily.
It’s entirely optional to use the Access and Sensory Clinic and you may wish to make an appointment at a GP or at another ACT Government COVID-19 vaccination clinic to get your COVID-19 vaccination. All ACT Government COVID-19 mass vaccination clinics have disability parking areas and accessible ramps.
Information about COVID-19 vaccinations in the ACT is available on the Information for people with disability page on the COVID-19 website.
In-home (in-reach) COVID-19 Vaccination
If a person with disability feels they may need to be vaccinated in their home because they have significant barriers to accessing other vaccination options, they can contact the ACT vaccination booking line on 02 5124 7700 (choose option 3 for the dedicated disability line).
They will be able to speak to someone who will take their information and then someone from the COVID-19 Vaccination Program team will contact them and coordinate vaccination in your home. This information is available on the Advice for People with Disability page of the COVID-19 website.
Disability support, in-home and community aged care workers will be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 if they deliver services in the ACT that are funded by the:
- National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)
- Commonwealth in-home and community age care program, or
- Territory and state governments.
If you work for or deliver one of these services, you are required to have received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccination by 15 November 2021 and a second dose by 13 December 2021.
Further information is available on the ACT COVID-19 website.
Priority COVID-19 vaccinations for all disability care workers
The ACT Government is continuing to offer priority COVID-19 vaccinations for all health, aged and disability care workers. This includes, but is not limited to, clinical and non-clinical workers of hospitals, health, age and disability care facilities.
Book your appointment by:
- calling ACT Health using the priority number provided by your manager, or
- the ACT COVID-19 vaccination booking line on 02 5124 7700 (7am to 7pm, daily).
If you need assistance making an appointment, speak to your manager and they can book it for you.
Identify yourself as an aged, disability or health care worker. You’ll need to answer a few questions to confirm your employment.
Find more information on the ACT COVID-19 vaccination web page.
COVID-19 testing for people with disability
You should get tested for COVID-19 if:
ACT Health has established a dedicated Access and Sensory testing site at the Garran Surge Centre for people with disability, children and young people with sensory or additional needs, and those who need additional support to undertake a test. Daily hours are 7.30am – 9.00pm.
A video on what to expect when visiting the Access and Sensory testing site is available here: Where to get tested in the ACT - COVID-19
The Garran Surge Centre also now provides a walk-in testing service for the general public.
If you have difficulty accessing a testing site, please call the COVID-19 Helpline. The Helpline operates on 6207 7244 between 8am and 8pm daily.
Information about the location of testing sites can be found on the Where to get tested page on the COVID-19 website.
In-home (in-reach) COVID-19 Testing
In addition, people with disability who are unable to attend a testing site can call ACT Health on 5124 6500. ACT Health will talk to the person about their needs and COVID-19 contact status and assess whether they are suitable for in-reach testing. The request is passed on to a team who will schedule the in-reach testing. Depending on demand for this service, a request may not guarantee a test.
Rapid Antigen Tests
A rapid antigen test (RAT) is a quick way for you to detect COVID-19 at home. These tests involve taking either a saliva sample or nasal swab that is placed into a chemical solution.
They are available from pharmacies, supermarkets and other retail stores.
Occasionally, RATs may not pick up that you do have COVID-19 infection. If you have COVID-19 symptoms you should have a PCR test.
This temporary program enables eligible people to access rapid antigen tests, to be more confident engaging in your regular activities, while protecting yourself and others from COVID-19.
ACT COVID-19 Disability Strategy
The ACT Government has developed a Strategy to guide support people in their response to the COVID-19 health emergency.
The ACT COVID-19 Disability Strategy is available on the Community Services Directorate’s website
Critical COVID-19 information translated to 12 commonly spoken languages in the ACT
The translated material, which is updated regularly, is available via the ACT Government’s COVID-19 website
Person-Centred Emergency Preparedness Planning Tool for COVID-19
This is a guide to assist people with disability to get the facts about COVID-19 and to plan for how they will manage the impact of this situation.
The Planning Tool is available on the Cmmunity Services Directorate’s website
COVID-19 Accessible Information & Social Stories
Easy English documents and videos about COVID-19 have been developed for the ACT by Advocacy for Inclusion and are available on their resources page.
Scope Australia have developed some great communication resources for understanding and staying safe from COVID-19.
Scope Australia also provide communication resources to help you understand, explain, and discuss COVID-19 vaccinations. These resources include Easy English documents and Social Stories. Social Stories are used to help someone better understand a specific social situation or idea.
Autism Spectrum Australia has created a Social Story on returning to school.
ACT Health has also developed a Social Story for students with disability which is available on the COVID-19-vaccination-social-story webpage.
The Australian Government Department of Health has published a range of Easy Read COVID-19 resources on the Department of Health website.
COVID-19 information for carers
The Carers ACT website includes information and support for carers during the COVID-19 health emergency. It includes a dedicated coronavirus COVID-19 information for carers webpage.
For assistance email: email@example.com or phone: 02 6296 9900
Emergency Food Relief
The ACT Government has partnered with VolunteeringACT and the State Emergency Service to provide emergency food to those in need.
Any Canberran who is significantly and adversely impacted by COVID-19 and is unable to feed their family is encouraged to call 1800 43 11 33.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
People with disability, Disability Support providers including NDIS providers and self-managing participants who use Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as part of their support arrangements should continue to access PPE through their usual means. Where this is no longer possible, they should first approach the National Medical Stockpile (NMS) by emailing NDISCOVIDPPE@health.gov.au
Where people with disability who require PPE on a daily basis to ensure that their support needs can be met and disability support providers are unable to access PPE supplies through these means, they are eligible to apply to access PPE through a supply supported by ACT Government. Requests for PPE can be lodged through the completion of an online request form at COVID19 website
Due to supply limitations, requests for PPE will be prioritised based on current advice from the Chief Health Officer, ACT Health and the demonstrated need for PPE as outlined through an online request.
Any questions or enquiries may be sent to the Community Services Directorate at CSDPPE@act.gov.au.
For more information, see:
- NDIS Commission Factsheet – COVID-19 Provider Information about PPE
- Department of Health – COVID-19 guidelines for infection prevention and control in residential care facilities
- Department of Health – COVID-19 information on the use of surgical masks
An Easy English style PPE Social Story is a great resource about "special clothes" developed for Malkara School students.
National Disability Services - support workers PPE video
The latest essential PPE information for ACT Disability Support providers and their workers can be found in this webinar facilitated by National Disability Services: Correct PPE Usage in a COVID Environment Video
- information on PPE requirements from ACT Health
- a live demonstration of donning and doffing PPE
- the correct fitting and fit-testing of the P95 Mask
- an interactive question and answer session
National Disability Services advise it is recommended viewing for all ACT organisations and their support workers.
Useful links and websites
You can also call the National Coronavirus and COVID-19 Vaccine Helpline which operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 1800 020 080. Contact details are also found here: National coronavirus and COVID-19 vaccine helpline
To connect to disability information and services you can call the National Disability Gateway on 1800 643 787. The Disability Gateway also includes a website at
For emergency respite, you can call your local Carer Gateway Service Provider 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 1800 422 737. Contact details are also found here: Contact Carers ACT
Resources are available regarding face masks including how to put on, wear and dispose of a face mask, and a task schedule to help break down the task of putting on a face mask into smaller steps plus a Social Story from Scope Australia called I must wear a mask
ACT Health has a webpage dedicated to Supporting others and their mental health and wellbeing.
The Australian Red Cross has some tips for staying happy and hopeful.
Queensland Government’s activities for a stronger mental wellbeing resource has many ideas for goals and activities.
Carers ACT – Self-care tips and ideas for carers
AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT COVID-19 INFORMATION AND RESOURCES
National Disability Information Helpline 1800 643 787
The Australian Government’ Disability Information Helpline provides information and referrals for people with disability, who need assistance because of COVID-19.
- Phone (free call): 1800 643 787
- If you are deaf, or have hearing loss or a speech impairment, you can call the National Relay Service on 133 677
- or via Livechat link on the website
The Helpline is available Monday to Friday, from 8am to 8pm (AEST) and Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 7pm (AEST). It is not available on national public holidays
Department of Health COVID-19 advice for people with disability
The Australian Government Department of Health has created a webpage containing COVID-19 advice for people with disability
Information for Families of a person with intellectual or developmental disability during the COVID-19 health emergency
The following Easy English documents been translated into multiple languages:
There are also a range of videos available made for and by people with disability on the website and on YouTube:
COVID-19 vaccine questions from people with disability:
Dr Lucas de Toca providing an update on the COVID-19 vaccine roll out to people with disability:
Information specific to disability providers has been issued by the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission, available here.
The latest COVID-19 vaccination Disability Provider Alerts are available here
COVID-19 National Health Plan for People with Disability
The Management and Operational Plan for COVID-19 for People with Disability (the Plan) helps provide a targeted response for people with disability, their families, carers, and support workers. The Plan is available in PDF, Word, and Easy Read and is available on the Australian Department of Health webpage
National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) response to COVID-19
The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) website provides the latest information on the response to COVID-19 including a number of changes to the NDIS to assist participants and providers during the COVID-19 health emergency.
National Debt Helpline
If you are in financial difficulty, free support is available at the National Debt Helpline (1800 007 007) where you can speak to a financial counsellor to receive advice. The National Debt Helpline also provides a free COVID-19 Financial Survival Guide, with information on how you can look after yourself and your family financially during the health emergency.
In the ACT the Carer Gateway Service is provided by Carers ACT. The Carer Gateway has a dedicated Coronavirus (COVID-19) information webpage for carers and the Carer Gateway phone line is available Monday to Friday, 8am to 5pm on: 1800 422 737
For emergency respite, you can call your local Carer Gateway Service Provider 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, also on 1800 422 737