Update for members working for a public health service or Forensicare.
Please see below for information regarding the process for both the winter retention and surge payment program, and the meal and refreshment program.
Click here to read the Retention Payment guidance document.
Click here to read the Meal Program guidance document.
Information from the Department of Health:
In recognition of the continuing challenges the public healthcare workforce continues to face , the Government has announced the Winter Retention and Surge Support Program. The program includes a $3,000 (prorated) Winter Retention and Support Payment, plus $13 million to support free meals and snacks prioritised for night shift workers and those working double shifts. The funding will be available to eligible employees of public health services, Ambulance Victoria and Forensicare.
Winter Retention and Surge Payment (the payment)
- The eligibility period for the payment is 1 July to 30 September 2022. The payment will be capped at $3,000 and will be split into two payments of up to $1,500. The first payment will be available to employees after 15 August 2022 and the second payment after 30 September 2022.
- The payment will be calculated against the employees contracted FTE or hours worked (as at two key dates). Casual staff will be eligible for the support payment as well as non-clinical staff.
Meals and refreshments program
- The availability of free meals and refreshments will be prioritised for night shift staff and staff working double shifts. This builds on the existing Healthcare Worker Wellbeing program that was announced in October 2021. The funding for this program is for six months, 1 July to 31 December 2022.
- Health services will be allocated funding for this initiative based on your overall FTE. Night shift NEPT drivers should also be provided access to free meals and refreshments overnight as part of this initiative.
- Health services will have flexibility with the delivery of this initiative and are responsible for identifying the most appropriate way to provide access to free meals and refreshments for their staff. Consultation with staff is actively encouraged.
Guidance documents are available for both components of the Winter Retention and Surge Support Program. The guidance documents outline eligibility criteria, payment calculation details, how the funding will be allocated, and FAQs.