Respite Care - Fact Sheet
Long term carers find that surviving is a matter
of taking time out for themselves. Part of this may just be taking
time for a cuppa during each day, but often longer breaks are
Respite care is an essential part of the overall support that
families may need. It can be provided in the client's home or in a
variety of out of home settings. Since not all families have the
same needs, respite care is usually flexible to fit in with a
WHAT IS RESPITE CARE?
Someone else takes over responsibility for the person you care
for. It might be for a few hours, a day or longer. This may free
some time for an exercise class, attend a wedding, weekly shopping
or to go on holidays.
There are three main types of respite care:
- In home
- Day centres
- Residential (nursing homes, hostels or regional
WHO GETS RESPITE CARE?
Any carer can ask for respite. You don't have to be a full time
carer. For example if your main duties are cooking then respite
care can be organised for that.
COST AND FREQUENCY
Standard fees are charged for residential respite in a nursing
home or hostel. Some services may be free, others a token fee while
others may be expensive. Some services will have a sliding scale
that is dependent on your income.
Most people who use respite do so regularly- often once or twice
a week. They may also have a regular pattern of holiday respite set
up for annual holidays. While respite is vital for people under a
stressful situation, the ideal is to organise respite before your
situation becomes difficult. Regular breaks are a central part of
any stress management.
LOOK AFTER YOURSELF
Respite is a vital part of maintaining your health and sanity.
Use the following checklist to see if are doing what you need to
look after yourself:
- Ask for help when you need it
- Take time for yourself
- Exercise, eat well and rest
- Relax regularly
- Keep up social contacts
- Attend a carers group for support
- Access and use available services
- Acknowledge and deal with feelings.
References and further information
For more information, advice, and referral, contact the
Commonwealth Carer Respite Centre on 1800 059 059, or Carers
Queensland Information & Support Line on 1800 242 636