Viability supplement in residential care

Page last updated: 22 June 2017

The viability supplement in residential care is a payment made to the service provider under the Aged Care Act 1997 to supplement the higher costs of care for small, rural aged care services to offer quality care to care recipients.

Eligibility

The viability supplement is calculated daily and paid automatically to eligible residential care providers on a monthly basis.

The viability supplement in residential care is paid according to the scheme that applies to the service.  There are four schemes: 1997 scheme, 2001 scheme, 2005 scheme and 2017 scheme.

Residential care services with extra service status are not eligible for the viability supplement.

Eligible Multi-Purpose Services and National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Flexible Care Services receive the viability supplement as a component of their respective subsidy or grant payments.

2017 scheme

Residential care services are eligible for the 2017 scheme if the service scores at least 50 points, out of a maximum 100 points.  More information is available at the 2017 scheme service points calculator.

The 2017 scheme was introduced on 1 January 2017 as part of the 2016-17 Budget measure Aged Care Provider Funding – improving the targeting of the viability supplement for regional aged care facilities. This measure updates the geographical classification system to the Modified Monash Model (MMM), and increased the rate payable to services scoring 80 or more points.  The MMM takes into account the size and isolation of a town based on 2011 Census data. 

From 1 July 2017, the amount of viability supplement paid in respect of eligible care recipients will increase by $2.12 per care recipient per day.  This amount is in addition to the indexation increase.

Grandparenting

Services eligible for the 1997 scheme, the 2001 scheme or the 2005 scheme disadvantaged by the 2017 scheme arrangements, are grandparented.

Read more about the eligibility criteria for the 1997, 2001 or 2005 schemes

Combining Services

If  two services combine and at least one of these services was receiving viability supplement under a previous scheme, the combined service will be reassessed for the viability supplement under the 2017 scheme arrangements.

Viability supplement – additional support for aged care homes specialising in care for Indigenous Australians and the homeless

In 2012, measures were introduced to expand existing funding under the viability supplement to provide additional support to:

  • aged care homes in very remote to moderately accessible locations
  • eligible aged care homes that provide specialist aged care services to Indigenous Australians
  • eligible aged care homes that provide specialist aged care services to people with a history of (or who may be at severe risk of) homelessness.

This additional support applies to both the 2005 scheme and the 2017 scheme.  See viability supplement – expansion for more information about eligibility and how to register for the expansion component.

Payment rates

The rates of payment of the viability supplement are indexed annually in July each year. Payment of the viability supplement is made through the aged care payment system.

For current rates of viability supplement paid to eligible residential care services go to the schedule of Subsidies and Supplements.

Contacts

For general enquiries regarding the viability supplement email subsidiesandsupplements@health.gov.au.

More information