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Caring for someone with incontinence

Supporting a family member or friend with incontinence can be confronting. Unpredictable, financially draining and dramatically adding to your workload, many carers report caring for someone with incontinence is one of the most difficult aspects of their role.

You may feel angry, frustrated, lonely, and unable to cope, but it’s vital you look after yourself. Caring for another can cause financial, mental and physical stress, which makes your job so much harder.

But help is available – from respite to financial support there’s a range of services you can call on to make caring for someone with incontinence a little easier.

It is not always easy to care for a person with incontinence, but the right advice and support may help make it more manageable.

Where to seek help when caring for someone with incontinence

There may be a number of things that are causing the incontinence or making it worse, so getting professional help is important for ongoing management.

The National Continence Helpline is a free and confidential service and is staffed by continence nurse advisors who can provide practical information, a wide range of resources and details of local continence services.

You can reach the helpline by calling 1800 33 00 66 or visit their website here .

Accessing financial assistance for support with continence

There are various funding schemes available for continence products funded by the Australian Government. These schemes have differing eligibility criteria and funding allocations, and it is important to note that the person you care for may be eligible to apply for government funding through several schemes. Australian Government funding schemes are open to all Australian citizens who meet the eligibility criteria.

The NDIS is a new way of supporting eligible Australians living with a permanent or significant disability.

Eligible NDIS participants are able to use their package funding to purchase consumables such as incontinence supplies.

For more information on the NDIS including eligibility and consumables. Please click here 

CAPS s an Australian Government Scheme to financially assist eligible people who have permanent and severe incontinence to meet some of the costs of incontinence management products.

CAPS gives you greater choice and flexibility in how you purchase your products from a supplier of your choice.

To access this support, you’ll need to complete a CAPS application form which can be found here. 

The DVA provides a range of incontinence products to eligible veterans and war widows via the Rehabilitation Appliances Program (RAP). Your doctor or health professional will fill out a form requesting the incontinence products then send it to an authorised product supplier on your behalf.

Watch the video below of Phil who gives us 11 of his best tips for a healthier bladder

By Phil Wilkinson
Urology and Continence Nurse

What’s next?

Independence Australia stocks a range of bladder products.

State Funding Schemes 

There are also a number of state-based funding schemes, including

Carer payment and allowances

If your capacity to work is limited because you’re caring for someone with a disability, chronic illness or is frail-aged, you can apply for fortnightly Centrelink financial support.

Click here for more details on eligibility and how to apply carer/companion card program.

A collaboration between the government, businesses and the community, the Carer Card Program gives recognition, understanding and support to Victorian carers. It enables you to get a wide range of discounts and benefits.

For more information and to apply online:

  • If you are based in Queensland click here
  • If you are based in New South Wales click here
  • If you are based in Victoria click here
  • If you are based in Tasmania click here
  • If you are based in South Australia click here
  • If you are based in Western Australia click here

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This article is sponsored by Independence Australia, a social enterprise that provides choices for people living with a disability or other personal need, enabling them to regain and retain their independence within a supportive community.

If you would like to support the valuable work we do, you can help us to provide choice for people living with a disability or other personal need by Shopping online with us or Making a donation.