News

COVID-19 (coronavirus) resources and supports

17th November 2020

With social distancing guidelines in place to address COVID-19 (coronavirus), access to essential resources and supports now look a little bit different.

The Australian Government and other essential businesses are putting measures in place to make it easier for people living with disability to access the resources and services they need. We have gathered information on assistance that may be available to you and others living with MS. Please contact MS Assist on 1800 812 311 if you need help accessing any essential resources or supplies.

Food and supplies

Apply for priority assistance for supermarket delivery

Woolworths introduced Priority Assistance home deliveries to help the elderly, people with disability and those in mandatory isolation. To apply for Priority Assistance delivery, you can complete the form here or call 1800 000 610 to find out more.


Medication

Pharmacy home delivery service

The Department of Health’s Home Medicines Service provides a free, contactless monthly delivery of prescription medication for older and vulnerable Australians. This service is accessed through your pharmacist.


Mental health support

Mental Health Support Lines

  • South Australia COVID-19 Mental Health Support Line, 1800 632 753 (8am-8pm, 7 days a week)
  • Northern Territory Mental Health Line, 1800 682 288 (24 hours)
  • Lifeline, 13 11 14
  • Beyond Blue, 1300 224 636

Resources

  • Red Cross can provide you with a daily telephone call to check on your wellbeing through a service known as Telecross. For more information about accessing Telecross as a client, please call Red Cross on 1300 885 698.
  • Beyond Blue's Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Service is available 24/7 at coronavirus.beyondblue.org.au. There is a dedicated webchat and phone line, staffed by mental health professionals briefed on the pandemic response, on 1800 512 348.
  • Black Dog Institute have published a collection of evidence-based resources to help individuals, workplaces, schools, parents and health professionals deal with coronavirus anxiety, stress and wellbeing.
  • Head to Health covers tips for maintaining good mental health during the outbreak, information on how to access mental health services, information for parents, and how to keep older Australians safe and connected by helping them get established online.

Employment support

Multiple Solutions

Multiple Solutions is the MS Society's Disability Employment Services provider supporting people living with injury, illness or disability to find a job. Whether you're working from home, have just lost your job or are anxious about going to work in an essential role, we can help.


Financial support

Services Australia payments for eligible individuals

You may be eligible for a payment from Services Australia if you or your family are affected by the coronavirus pandemic. You may be eligible in the following circumstances:

  • not able to work or don’t have work
  • in isolation or hospitalised
  • caring for children.

Visit the Services Australia website to register a claim.

If you already receive a payment from Services Australia, there might be changes to your payments. For more information visit the Services Australia website.

JobKeeper payment

JobKeeper Payment helps businesses significantly affected by Coronavirus (COVID-19). It’s a payment that helps employers with the costs of their employees’ wages. The Australian Taxation Office pays JobKeeper Payment to eligible employers. Your employer will tell you if they’re eligible to claim the JobKeeper Payment for you. If they are, they’ll pay it to you as part of your usual wages.


Your MS support services

MS Society SA & NT

It’s business as usual at the MS Society, and the health and wellbeing of people with MS continues to be our priority. We are here to support you and to deliver services to our MS clients, with some new protocols and precautionary measures in place:

  • Face-to-face services are on hold, but we are still available to meet with you over the phone.
  • Group activities and events have been postponed.
  • New virtual exercise services now available.

Read our COVID-19 update for more information.

NDIS

NDIS participants in South Australia have access to a range of temporary measures to ensure they can receive their disability-related supports, in line with public health advice. Changes to your NDIS services include:

  • phone or online planning meetings
  • claim the costs of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), including face masks
  • eligible NDIS participants able to use plan funding to purchase low-cost Assistive Technology, including smart devices (up to $1500)
  • NDIS plans to be extended by up to 24 months, ensuring continuity of support and increasing capacity of NDIA staff to focus on urgent and required changes to plans
  • greater plan flexibility to ensure access to supports.

For more information about these temporary measures in SA, you can read the media release from the Minister for the NDIS, Stuart Robert here.

For more information about general measures nationwide, visit the NDIS website.


Stay informed

  • Visit the Australian Department of Health website for regular updates.
  • MS Australia have a dedicated COVID-19 landing page that is reviewed daily and updated with new information relevant to people with MS whenever it becomes available.
  • The SA COVID-19 Information Line offers local information and advice on general COVID-19 information for South Australians. Operates from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm every day on 1800 253 787.
  • Call the National Coronavirus Information Helpline for information and advice on COVID-19 from an Australia wide perspective on 1800 020 080
  • SA Health maintains a list of COVID-19 clinics and testing centres in South Australia.
  • Download the Coronavirus Australia app in the Apple App Store or Google Play
  • Join the WhatsApp channel for iOS or Android.


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COVID-19 (coronavirus) resources and supports