Coronavirus up to Date Information for Residents, Friends and Family

Last Updated: 02 June 1451hrs

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.

Newsletter

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Contact

Brett Menzies 0408 562 498 or brett.menzies@respect.com.au.

Current Status

There are currently no suspected or active cases in any aged care home.

There are 7220 confirmed cases in Australia with one hundred and three recorded deaths.

CURRENT UPDATE:

Respect has now commenced an easing of visitor restricitons across both its Tasmanian and Victorian facilities due to the decreased risk currently posed by potential coronavirus transmission in the community. The easing of these restrictions will see Respect sites in line with the minimum requirements laid out by the Federal Government by June 1st.

Respect will however be vigilant as to how the easing of restrictions more generally affects coronavirus transmission rates and is prepared to quickly and decisively re-enforce visitor restricitons if necessary.

Below is the de-escalation plan for Respect sites and the relevant easing of visitor restrictions.

11/05/2020- 17/05/2020 18/05/2020- 30/05/2020 01/06/2020 onwards
1 visitor 30mins/week 1, 2 hour visit for 1-2 people each week 1, 2 hour visit for 1-2 people each day

Each visitor will need to contact the facility and they will be given a code and instructions on how to make a booking through our website using that code. Once in the booking system you will be taken through a series of educational videos and you will also be asked to declare that you have had an up to date influenza vaccination. Visiting arrangements will be reviewed each week with further changes implemented to increase visiting if the risk remains low. Please be mindful however that we will continue to experience localised outbreaks in the future and we will respond accordingly with individual facility lockdowns moving forward as the situation demands.

There remains in place the capacity to visit the site under exceptional circumstances such as end of life care or when asked by the facility to provide support to a resident who is distressed.

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.

Visits will initially need to be conducted between 9am to 5pm from Monday to Friday, but will be considered in the situation of a resident receiving end of life care with flexibility in this regard applied on a case by case basis. Visitors who don’t comply with these conditions of entry and/or who do not follow the directions of staff will be asked to leave and refused further entry. Whilst we don’t want to be punitive, we must strictly adhere to these measures to ensure the safety of residents and staff.

Respect has deployed extra staff resources within the home to meet the needs of residents at this time.

Please remember you can still call at anytime, or video call by arranging this with the home your loved one resides in.

When talking to your loved one, if you can please reassure them that this is a precautionary measure only, and we are working day and night to ensure their safety whilst having as much social engagement as we can provide in the circumstances.

To sign up to our newsletter and receive instant notifications please visit: www.respect.com.au/signup


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;

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.

Hand Hygiene

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

Social distancing is an important way to mitigate the risks of the virus in the community.