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Coronavirus: Direct payments and PAs

Here are some FAQs about direct payments and employing PAs which were prepared in April 2020. They remain relevant as long as the pandemic continues.

If you need further advice please contact your payroll provider or Disability Sheffield PA advice line 0114 2536750 or via email

Q: Do we continue to pay PAs if we (as a family) decide to cancel shifts?

A: We can confirm that we advise you to pay the PA as you would for the weeks missed due to the family self isolating. 

Q: Can a PA still be paid a normal wage if they need to self-isolate?

A: If your PA is unwell, Covid-19 sick pay guidance applies (please see SSP).

If your PA has to self-isolate, we ask that you continue to pay the PA their usual hours for the time they are isolating.

Q: My PA does not wish to work at this current time; do I still have to pay them?

A: If the PA is not self-isolating or supporting their own family who are shielding following a confirmation letter then we ask that they take holidays or unpaid leave. 

Q. I do not want my PA working at this current time; do I have to pay them?

A. If you are asking the PA to not attend work then you will still need to pay the PA for the hours they would have worked.

Q: My PA has had to stop working to look after their family, is there any other support I can access?

A: Individuals who require support and their PA is no longer available can register your need on:

If you are paying a PA who is self-isolating, please contact Children with Disabilities team who can support with additional funding for a second PA.

Q: What if I contract Coronavirus, can my PAs access PPE? Do we need to pay for this?

A: PAs can access PPE for free by contacting Disability Sheffield on or 0114 2536750. Please consider the government guidelines to when PPE is required.

Q: Can I pay for my PA to travel to work in a taxi instead of using public transport?

A: Yes, please record any additional spend and keep receipts for auditing purposes.

Q: Can I have my PAs work longer shifts e.g. 30 hours in a run?

A: All shifts would have to comply with the employment law requirements (please see for work hours.

Q: Can family members be paid as a PA?

A: Please contact the social care team to discuss this issue on a case by case basis.

Q: Can I pay my PAs who are providing non-contact support or virtual support?

A: Yes e.g. for shopping on behalf of the family or providing virtual lessons.

Q: Are PA’s classed as key workers?

A: Yes PAs are classed as key workers. An authorisation letter is available via Voluntary Action Sheffield on and 0114 253 6600 or contact Disability Sheffield on 0114 2536750.

Q: If day provision is cancelled can I use the funds that would have been used to pay for this, to increase my PA hours?

A: We have agreed to this when people were accessing club provision and a PA and the clubs have closed.

Q: I am really struggling to cope, is there any additional support that can be offered?

A: Please contact social care for any emergency packages that are needed.

Q: I am a PA and the individual I support has decided to self-isolate with their family and does not require my support. Can I work as a PA for someone else?

A: Yes, we encourage PAs who would like to redeploy or work additional hours to contact Disability Sheffield on 0114 2536750 and sign up to the PA register. The for can be found at

Last Updated: 08/02/2021
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