I’d like to thank you for your continued understanding and support as we navigate the unpredictable Coronavirus landscape. As the situation evolves, with the impact on our communities and constant news-flow in the media, this is a challenging time for everyone.
We continue to do the best we can to make a positive impact on the lives of our clients, and to assist them to move through this period by helping to maintain their wellbeing and independence, in a moment-in-time when there are no easy solutions.
We are here to support you and our clients every step of the way:
We have communicated with every one of our clients about the importance of keeping up their regular home care.
We have reassured all clients that the care worker visiting their home is taking all necessary measures to ensure they stay safe and symptom-free. Please remember that any care worker displaying Coronavirus symptoms is not allowed to work and must get tested.
We anticipate however that some clients may choose to temporarily reduce services. We will work with clients to encourage the continuation of safe and essential services, and will maintain contact with any that reduce services to monitor their welfare. Our aim will be to restart services as soon as the client feels comfortable to do so.
In late May, Victoria commenced easing restrictions. In the early weeks, community transmission was maintained at low and stable levels; unfortunately however a double digit increase in outbreaks and community transmission over the past week has resulted in all metropolitan Melbourne suburbs and Mitchell Shire (areas indicated in blue on the map below) being placed on Stage 3 restrictions and nine public housing towers being placed on ‘hard lockdown’. Details of the suburbs and restrictions can be found here: https://www.vic.gov.au/coronavirus-covid-19-restrictions-victoria
All Victorian borders will also be closed as of midnight tonight. We are working with the authorities on the VIC/NSW border to obtain exemptions for our staff to be able to move freely between suburbs on those borders, and recommend that you do the same.
Many Victorian suburbs are also being targeted for free local testing. For up to date information about testing locations and schedules, please contact the Victoria Department of Health and Human Services. Visit the ‘Latest Health Advice’ section on the website: www.vic.gov.au/coronavirus or call the Coronavirus Hotline: 1800 675 398.
What can we all continue do to protect ourselves and our communities from Coronavirus?
Please contact Care Connect immediately if any staff member or care worker that works with our clients experience an onset of symptoms, or if they are going to get tested or have tested positive for Coronavirus. Please do this through your usual communication channels.
Please ensure that staff members and care workers always follow the screening process before entering a client’s home. The process can be found in the ‘Need to Know’ section of this web page.
- If staff or a care worker experience any breathing problems call 000 immediately
- If staff or a care worker experiences any other COVID-19 symptoms, please get tested. Symptoms include:
- Runny nose
- Sore throat
- Coughing or sneezing
- A new loss of your sense of taste or smell
- Fever (temperature over 38 degrees)
- All staff and care workers must wash hands frequently with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer and keep surfaces clean
- Remind staff and care workers to avoid touching their face, eyes, mouth and nose
- Remind staff and care workers to maintain at least 1.5M distance between yourself and another person
Please ask your care workers to remind clients of these procedures, and that in home care services are essential, and are as important as protecting themselves from COVID-19.
In accordance with advice from the Department of Health, care workers do not have to wear personal protective equipment such as masks, gloves, aprons or gowns, and protective eyewear.
However, personal protective equipment must be worn if: a client has been diagnosed with COVID-19 or is suspected of, or displaying, symptoms of COVID-19. Please see protocols in the ‘Need to Know’ section of this web page.
Cold and Flu season:
As Australia moves into winter, there will likely be more and more people experiencing cold and flu-like symptoms in the coming months and even though social distancing has seen a significant drop in flu-like presentations so far this year, that doesn’t mean it’s gone completely. It is recommended that all staff be vaccinated against the flu.
In closing, please remind all staff and care workers to review and follow the Coronavirus policies & procedures contained in the ‘Need to Know’ section of this web page.
As this situation continues to evolve, we will update you with any relevant changes, but please get in touch through your usual channels if there is anything we can help you with.
General Manager, Service Delivery Partnerships