Coronavirus up to Date Information for Residents, Friends and Family

Last Updated: 25 November 1111 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.

Newsletter

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Contact

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

Current Status

TASMANIA & NEW SOUTH WALES
Visitations Update

We are pleased to advise of further easing of visitation restrictions at all Tasmanian & New South Wales Respect aged care homes and have updated our booking system to reflect these changes, which essentially include;

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)
  • have a temperature higher than 37.5 degrees
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.

The above new restrictions only apply to our Tasmanian & New South Wales homes.

VICTORIA
Further Easing of Restrictions for Victorian Homes

Due to the continuing improvement of the coronavirus situation in Victoria, we are pleased to announce the further easing of restrictions for our aged care homes in Victoria.

Visitors will still need to manage visitations via our booking system at https://cov.respect.com.au and continue to be limited to the current visiting times.

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.

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)
  • have a temperature higher than 37.5 degrees

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.

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.

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.

Victoria has now declared a state of disaster with strict restrictions now in place. Respect staff in our Victorian facilities are now working every shift with face masks and face shields to protect themselves and consumers. Respect is implementing every measure possible to prevent coronavirus entering one of our sites.

IMPORTANT Notice for South Australians
Due to the escalating COVID situation in South Australia (SA), the state has been classified as a hotspot and as a result anybody travelling from SA since Monday 9th November will not be permitted to enter any Respect aged care homes in either Tasmania or Victoria. For anybody that is travelling from South Australia recently and is unable to make a booking please contact the General Manager at the appropriate home.

BOOKING SYSTEM

Please be aware that the booking system shuts off at 4pm on a Friday and comes back up 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 visitors numbers can be planned for that weekend where admin resources are less.

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 https://cov.respect.com.au/. 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.

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.

There are currently no suspected or active cases in any of our aged care homes.

There are 27,835 confirmed cases in Australia with nine hundred and seven 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;

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.