Coronavirus up to Date Information for Residents, Friends and Family
Last Updated: 18 January 1558 hrs
Please use this page for the most up to date information regarding the Coronavirus and Respect Aged Care. This page will be updated regularly.
It has become exceedingly apparent that traditional methods of communication are failing during the recent outbreak of Coronavirus. Respect Aged Care has created this page as a single source of truth for residents, friends, and family regarding the Coronavirus and steps Respect Aged Care are taking to minimise the risk to our residents.
To sign up to our newsletter to receive instant notifications, please visit respect.com.au/signup
Brett Menzies 0408 562 498 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visitors, once on site, will be asked to:
- complete a risk-based questionnaire regarding recent travel and activities;
- have their temperature taken;
- be supervised on entry to ensure proper hand sanitisation;
- maintain social distancing from their loved one of 1.5 meters throughout the duration of their visit;
- only visit their loved one in their room and with no access to public or communal areas, or to visit other residents; and
- wear personal protective equipment if deemed necessary in the future depending on the circumstances.
Current Visitation Restrictions
No person may enter the premises of a Respect site if they:
- are unwell with flu-like symptoms, such as a cough, sore throat, runny nose, shortness of breath, or fever;
- have had known contact in the last 14 days with a person who was a confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19); or
- have a temperature higher than 37.5 degrees.
New South Wales Visitor Restrictions
Due to the escalating COVID situation in New South Wales (NSW), there are various locations that have been classified as high risk areas. Anyone who has spent time in any of these high risk areas must not enter any Respect residential aged care facility in the 14 days after doing so, because of their potential exposure to COVID-19. This includes staff, contractors and visitors.
The high risk areas are:
- Northern Beaches Local Government Area (on and since Friday 11 December)
- An end date for the Northern Beaches Local Government Area is not yet known and will depend on how quickly the outbreak is contained.
- Peakhurst: Gannons Park, Forest Rangers FC, Little Rangers session (Friday 11 December 4:30pm to 5:30pm)
- Penrith: Penrith RSL Club (Sunday 13 December, 1pm to 6pm)
- Kirribilli: Kirribilli Club (Monday 14 December 12pm to 3pm).
- The Peakhurst, Kirribilli and Penrith locations will be classified as high risk until 14 days after the last date/time listed for each, above (unless extended).
Any person seeking to visit any Respect home who has been at any of the high risk areas during the affected times will not be permitted entry.
As of 7th January 2021, NSW Health has released updated COVID-19 advice for residential aged care providers across the state:
Until further notice all residential aged care facilities must:
- ensure all staff and visitors wear a surgical mask within the facility
- ensure residents have a maximum of only two visitors each day. They may have different visitors each day
- exclude visitors from the Northern Area of the Northern Beaches, City of Wollongong, Cumberland City Council or the Canterbury Ward of Canterbury Bankstown Council
- exclude staff and visitors who:
- live in a household with a person who is currently self-isolating
- have been to any of the latest COVID-19 locations in NSW at the times and dates listed
- have a fever (37. 5°C or higher) or symptoms of COVID-19 (acute blocked nose congestion has been added to the list of symptoms)
- are a close contact of a confirmed COVID-19 case and are within their self-isolation period
The affected areas are being regularly assessed and updated, and anybody that has been potentially exposed will be excluded from visiting any Respect home. The list of areas of active community transmission are being regularly updated and for the latest information please visit the NSW COVID-19 website
Visitation restrictions essentially include:
- Up to two people per visit (during admin hours and weekends), and multiple visits allowed in one day, subject to Respect policy;
- Persons under the age of 16 will be allowed to visit an aged care home (they will also require an up to date influenza vaccine);
- Visiting services such as hairdressers and allied health professionals will be able to attend a home; and
- Residents will be allowed to leave the home, for example with friends and family.
|Regardless of the above restrictions, no person is allowed to be on or remain on the premises if they have not had an up to date flu vaccination.|
Visitation restrictions essentially include:
- There are no limits on the purpose of visits, the number of visitors or the length of the visit to care facilities
- People of any age can visit people in care facilities
- Visitors must use the visitor booking system to arrange visitation
- Masks are to be worn by visitors
- Visitor temperatures are to be taken & recorded upon arrival
- Visitation is only to occur in the resident’s bedroom and not utilise communal areas.
- No density limits apply to resident’s own rooms
- Density limits still apply to spaces that are communal for visitors and residents (e.g. waiting rooms or spaces the facility makes available for visitors)
- Visitor declarations and other COVIDsafe requirements (e.g. wearing a mask, hand hygiene) remain
- People under 16 are now permitted to visit aged care homes, and must comply with all visitation requirements. People over 12 should wear a mask, people under 12 may wear a mask, and people under 2 should not wear a mask.
- Please note that a current influenza vaccination is not a requirement for Victorian visitation.
South Australian Visitors
- South Australia is no longer a designated hotspot so visitors are now welcome in all Respect homes
Residents will now be permitted to enter the community for outings such as shopping, provided they are wearing an appropriate mask. Due to social distancing requirements we are still not in a position to recommence bus trip outings or large group activities, and all of our staff and residents continue to adhere to density regulations. We have also removed the requirement for residents to quarantine upon returning from hospital or appointments (if the appointments are in Regional Victoria), as well as for new admissions (Respite or Permanent) if from Regional Victoria. Respect staff in our Victorian facilities are now working every shift with face masks to protect themselves and residents. Respect is implementing every measure possible to prevent coronavirus entering one of our sites.
Booking A Visit
The first step when booking a visit is to contact the home of your loved one and you will be given a code and instructions on how to make a booking through the website. We will continue to manage visits using our online booking system here. Once in the booking system you will be taken through a series of educational videos. Please be aware that the booking system shuts off at 3pm on a Friday and comes back up online at 9am Monday. This means you will not be able to make a booking in between these times for that weekend. You are still able to book for other times in the future, just not for that particular weekend. This is so that visitor numbers can be planned for that weekend where admin resources are less.
Loved ones can still be contacted by telephone and video chat facilities if they wish to do so. If you would like to speak with your loved one by video chat please don’t hesitate to contact the home your loved one resides in so this can be arranged.
We do not currently have any cases of coronavirus at any home, and will continue to closely monitor the situation and make changes to visitation as necessary.
There are 28,708 confirmed cases in Australia with 909 recorded deaths.
What is the Coronavirus?
The Coronavirus is a new virus, distinctively different from existing viruses such as Influenza or Gastroenteritis.
Despite reports to the contrary, the Coronavirus is not just like Influenza. Humans have not had previous exposure and therefore have no pre-existing immunity to the virus.
How can I see or talk to my love one?
Loved ones can still always be contacted by telephone, and during this time we have setup video chat facilities so friends and family can see and talk to their loved one face to face if they wish to do so. If you would like to speak with your loved one by video chat please don’t hesitate to contact the home your loved one resides in so this can be arranged.
We have seen ingenious ideas such as this in other countries where lock downs are occurring:
As a progressive aged care organisation, Respect will investigate all types of ways to keep our residents engaged with their loved ones. Next to their personal safety, their emotional well-being is paramount to us and we encourage family and friends to stay in contact as much as possible during this time.
What are the extenuating circumstances where I can see my loved in the home?
If your loved one is passing away, please contact the aged care home where your loved one resides so we can ensure you see them if you do not pose a risk to other residents. Other extenuating circumstances will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
If the visit is deemed necessary then you will be met at the front entrance, and;
- will be shown how to properly sanitise your hands;
- will need to complete a brief questionnaire which will include questions regarding recent travel including interstate, recent health issues, and contact with any known person with Coronavirus;
- will be required to have your temperature taken; and
- may also be required to wear personal protective equipment depending on the circumstances at the time.
Tasmanian sites only – What should I do if I am currently on the mainland or plan to travel out of Tasmania in the near future?
The Tasmanian Government has declared that from midnight on Friday, 20 March 2020, anyone arriving into Tasmania will be required to self-isolate for 14 days. This includes Tasmanian residents returning home to Tasmania.
Whilst the self-isolation will not apply to essential travelers, including health care workers, at this stage, we believe it will apply to all other non-essential visitors to the state including family of residents.
Are all elderly in general at risk?
It appears as people age so does their chance of having pre-existing conditions, and less fitness to “fight off” the Coronavirus which puts them at higher risk.
What pre-existing condition puts someone at higher risk?
Pre-existing conditions which currently appear to put people at higher risk than others include cardiovascular disease, diabetes, respiratory disease, hypertension, and cancer.
Should I be personally worried?
More than 80% of cases experience mild symptoms only.
The mortality rate of persons with no pre-existing conditions appears to be less than 1%, however this may include undiagnosed pre-existing conditions.
People most at risk are those with pre-existing conditions. If you have a pre-existing condition, we recommend considering self-isolation.
How can I help?
The best thing family and friends can do is keep in contact with your loved ones so they do not feel socially isolated. Please remember to reassure them the lock down is precautionary.
You can also follow hygiene instructions from trusted sources, including the the Department of Health and World Health Organization (WHO), to do your part in the community.
Please see the following video for proper hand hygiene using the WHO method.
Cough and Sneeze Etiquette
Please see the following poster for proper cough and sneeze etiquette.
Social distancing is an important way to mitigate the risks of the virus in the community.