Are TAC clients expected to receive a COVID-19 vaccination if in receipt of services or support?
COVID-19 vaccination is voluntary. It is recommended for everyone 5 years and older. Information is available from the Australian Department of Health and Aged Care.
A service provider may choose to require proof of vaccination to allow a service to be provided. However, the service provider should let the client know if this is the case and should seek advice to ensure privacy, occupational health and discrimination issues are considered.
All Australians must provide informed consent before having the COVID-19 vaccine. If a TAC client is unable to make their own decision and has a substitute decision maker in place, that person will need to consider the will and preference of the client. Guidance on on informed consent is available from the Australian Government.
Service provision for unvaccinated clients
The TAC encourages providers to continue service provision for unvaccinated clients, considering how safety can be assured for clients and workers.
Victoria's Department of Families, Fairness and Housing (DFFH) has advised that community service organisations should provide services regardless of a client's vaccination status, provided it can be done safely. Information from the DFFH is available for the community services sector, including disability services.
Does the TAC expect that providers receive a COVID-19 vaccination?
The TAC supports the Victorian Government’s directives. Workers in healthcare, disability and other professions must provide evidence that they:
- have received three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, or
- have a medical exemption evidenced by an authorised medical practitioner
Vaccination requirements are available on:
- the Victorian Government's information on worker vaccination requirements
- the Australian Government's advice on the COVID-19 vaccines
How can a TAC client requiring additional support receive a COVID-19 vaccination?
If a TAC client requires additional support to receive a COVID-19 vaccination, Disability Liaison Officers can assist. Victorian Government vaccination information for people with a disability or special requirements can be found at www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au/vaccination-information-people-disability
- Support services for people with a disability or special requirements, including getting vaccinated at home
- How to get a COVID-19 vaccination
- Vaccination centres offering enhanced access for people with a disability
- Getting help from a Disability Liaison Officer
TAC funding of providers to support a client to get a COVID vaccination can be considered. If a client does not have approved support to attend medical appointments or access the community, a request needs to be provided to the claims manager to consider the reasonable time required plus travel to support the client to get vaccinated.
Some clients with large attendant care programs or support to attend medical appointments should be able to utilise this existing support.
Can I ask the TAC for a client’s COVID-19 status?
The TAC is bound by privacy laws and may not be able to disclose a client’s COVID-19 status to you. If you are seeking this information you will need to ask the client’s claims manager. The claims manager will work with the TAC privacy team to determine if this information can be shared. You will then be notified either that the information cannot be disclosed, or can be shared. If the information can be shared, the claims staff member will be required to continue to work within TAC legislation and policy.