A coronavirus payment scheme has paid out $18 million over the course of the pandemic, the prime minister has said.
The Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment is a one-time sum of $1500 that people who miss out on work because they’ve been directed to isolate can apply for.
Scott Morrison said $16 million of the money paid out went to Victoria.
“So in NSW for those who need to access that payment they can access that payment and hopefully that will be of great use to you,” he said.
His comments came as NSW health officials battle an outbreak in the state that has thrown Christmas plans into chaos.
The requirements vary slightly from state to state, but in general, a person has to have been told by a health professional to self-isolate to be eligible for the payment.
People caring for someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 could also be eligible.
The NSW guidelines say eligible applicants should be at least 17 years old, live in the state, and have the right to work in Australia.
The person should be unable to work and earn money, and have exhausted any other forms of sick leave entitlements.
The period of quarantine has to be after September 17 for NSW residents.
Couples can make a separate claim for each person.
Since August 6, more than 12,000 claims have been granted across the country.
All states and territories except the Northern Territory have made agreements with the federal government to implement the scheme.
Speaking to reporters at parliament in Canberra on Monday, the Prime Minister said eligibility for the government’s JobKeeper program would change in January, with businesses required to prove a turnover decline for the December quarter.
But with the lockdown possibly impacting the March economic quarter, Mr Morrison said decisions on whether to extend support measures “all depends on the data over the next few days”.
Despite the outbreak, NSW has not sought any additional support from the federal government.
As of Tuesday, about 4500 people were in police-guarded hotel quarantine in Sydney, the NSW police force said.