Emergency leave extended until end of 2024

Three older individuals are engaged in a conversation while sitting in a living room with a warm atmosphere. Blinds cover the windows, and the room is decorated with traditional furniture and a floral patterned sofa.

COVID-19 remains a serious threat to the health of older people.

We understand that during outbreaks of COVID-19 people who live in aged care homes might want to stay with their family to reduce the risk of exposure to the virus.

We introduced emergency leave in 2020 so people who live in aged care homes can temporarily relocate, without the need to pay additional fees to keep their place in residential care.

Emergency leave provisions have now been extended to the end of 2024. This extension will continue to provide older people with the option of staying with family during an outbreak without worrying about extra costs.

For more information on emergency leave see:

Let's change aged care, together

Every Australian should feel confident about accessing high quality and safe aged care, when and where they need it.

The changes mean Older people will have greater choice and control, services that respect and meet their needs, and support to stay independent as they age.

To find out more and help design the changes, visit the Get Involved page or call 1800 318 209.

Subscribe to our aged care newsletters and mailing lists

Sign up for regular updates on changes to aged care, open consultations and news for aged care providers.


The Department of Health and Aged Care acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia, and their continuing connection to land, sea and community. We pay our respects to them and their cultures, and to elders both past and present.