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COVID-19 update for carers in NSW

Mon, 16 Aug

Carers NSW is closely monitoring the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, the ongoing government response and the wide ranging impacts it has on carers. Below is our latest COVID-19 information and resources for carers.

The NSW Premier has announced new restrictions for all of regional and rural NSW and additional restrictions in Greater Sydney. These restrictions came into effect from 12.01am Monday 16 August 2021.

The whole of NSW is now under stay at home orders. The Government is clear in stating that people can still have one visitor at one time to fulfil carers' responsibilities or provide care or assistance, but please note that carers are being urged to only leave home for caring reasons where absolutely necessary, not for discretionary visits, and not taking additional family members with them.

Regional and rural restrictions

The new stay at home rules apply to all parts of regional and rural NSW, including those parts which were subject to stay at home rules before 14 August 2021. Restrictions will be in place until at least 10 September 2021.

People must not enter regional and rural NSW from Greater Sydney without a reasonable excuse – providing essential care is considered a reasonable excuse. A permit system to enter regional NSW will be introduced from Saturday 21 August 2021, however you are not required to apply for a permit if you are travelling to care for someone.

Additional restrictions for Greater Sydney

From Monday 16 August 2021, anyone in Greater Sydney (which includes the Blue Mountains, Central Coast, Wollongong and Shellharbour) can only shop, exercise or engage in outdoor recreation within their Local Government Area or within 5km of their home. This also applies to people in regional and rural NSW. This rule does not apply to visiting your chosen singles bubble buddy, your intimate partner, or the person you care for.

The Local Government Areas of concern in Greater Sydney remain: Bayside, Blacktown, Burwood, Campbelltown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Cumberland, Fairfield, Georges River, Liverpool, Parramatta, Strathfield, and some suburbs of Penrith. In these areas:

  • Outdoor recreation is no longer considered a reasonable excuse to leave your home – you must only be outdoors to exercise or supervise a child under 12, and this must occur within 5km from your home
  • From Saturday 21 August 2021, people who live alone in the above areas of concern, and wish to nominate a “singles buddy” must now register that person online. Registration will be made available soon via the Service NSW website

Increased fines for breaches of the Public Health Order

From Monday 16 August, the following fines can be issued to anyone breaching the Public Health Order:

  • $5,000 for breaching self-isolation rules
  • $5,000 for lying on a permit
  • $5,000 for lying to a contact tracer
  • $3,000 for breaching the two person outdoor exercise/recreation rule
  • $3,000 for breaching rules around entry into regional NSW

COVID-19 Test and Isolate Support Payments

Eligible workers aged 17 years and over who live in the Local Government Areas of concern can receive a $320 payment for lost wages, if this is the result of isolating while waiting for a COVID-19 test result. These payments are intended to cover lost wages of casual workers but also those who may have exhausted their sick leave or carer’s leave to isolate at home.

Information on eligibility and how to apply will be made available on the NSW Government website.

COVID-19 Disaster Payments for NSW

On 15 August 2021, the Australian Government announced that COVID-19 Disaster Payments will be extended to all eligible people impacted by the New South Wales statewide hotspot announcement.

Eligible people will receive $750 per week if they have lost 20 or more hours of work, and $450 per week if they have lost between 8 and less than 20 hours of work, or a full day of work. People who currently receive an income support payment can also receive an extra payment of $200 if they have lost at least eight hours of work and meet the other eligibility requirements for the COVID-19 Disaster Payment

More information about the COVID-19 Disaster Payment is available on the Services Australia website.

Stay up to date with the latest information

Risks and rules can change quickly, so it is important to stay updated and use up-to-date and accurate sources of information.

  • Full details of current rules and restrictions, as well as information about getting vaccinated, visiting care facilities and accessing financial support are published online at: If you require clarification around any of the rules or restrictions, contact Service NSW on 13 77 88
  • All NSW residents are encouraged to regularly check the venues and transport routes where confirmed cases have been. These are listed along with detailed instructions for close and casual contacts at:
  • Regular updates are also available on the NSW Health Facebook page, where live press conferences are broadcast
  • The ABC News website and mobile app has live coverage of COVID-19 news

Resources developed by Carers NSW to support carers to manage the practical and emotional challenges of caring through COVID-19, are available on our Carer Resources page, using the search term 'COVID'