COVID-19 rapid antigen test (RAT) eligibility and claiming

  • Coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • News

From 23 December 2021, eligible supported independent living (SIL) participants and providers can claim up to $12.50 per rapid antigen test (RAT) when a support worker is required to undergo COVID-19 testing to safely deliver supports to a participant.

We’ve introduced this temporary support to ensure the ongoing safety and continuation of services to participants and in recognition of RATs as a useful tool in preventative screening whilst managing COVID-19 outbreaks.

This temporary measure is available nationally until 31 January 2022, while longer term support arrangements are being considered, consistent with health orders and advice from the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC).

We will review this temporary measure on an ongoing basis to determine what changes are needed to safely deliver supports and services. 

Participants in supported independent living 

Participants in SIL can claim for a RAT when it is needed in order to safely live in their dwelling.

For example, a RAT may be required when the participant returns to a dwelling they share with others after being in the community.

The Low Cost Disability-Related Health Consumables line item in the core budget (support item 03_040000919_0103_1_1) can be used to claim for each RAT cost.

If a participant thinks their plan funds are too low to claim the RAT support, they can contact us by phone: 1800 800 110.

Supported independent living providers 

Eligible SIL providers can claim for a RAT when a support worker is required to undergo COVID-19 testing to deliver supports, based on state or territory public health recommendations or requirements.

A support worker may be required to undergo a RAT over several days. Providers can claim up to $12.50 for each test directly from the NDIS, provided it meets the eligibility criteria.

To claim the RAT support, providers must:

  • purchase and provide the test to workers between 23 December 2021 and 31 January 2022 
  • be registered in the group 0115 – Assistance with Daily Life Tasks in a Group or Shared Living Arrangement
  • be delivering a support in the Assistance in Shared Living Arrangements - Supported Independent Living support section of the Assistance with Daily Life support category 

Providers can only claim this payment when they are unable, because of a recommendation or requirement from a state or territory public health authority, to deliver a support to a participant without a support worker undergoing a RAT. 

Providers cannot claim for this support if there is an opportunity to roster other workers to deliver supports. 

Providers of Short Term Accommodation and Assistance (including the provision of respite care), Residential Care and Individualised Living Options are not eligible to claim for RATs under these arrangements at this time.

From 18 January 2022, providers can begin to directly claim for the RAT supports using the bulk payment request template in the myplace provider portal.

More detail about information needed for the bulk payment requests is on the payments and billing page.

Updated COVID Addendum

We have published an updated COVID Addendum with the dates of these temporary arrangements. Please check the COVID Addendum for:

  • claiming conditions for COVID-19 temporary support measures
  • the dates that these temporary supports are claimable.

We will continue to monitor current arrangements and advise any future changes. 

More information: