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Updated 2 January 2022

Bene Aged Care is closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic and adhering to the advice of the Australian Commonwealth and State Departments of Health in taking appropriate precautionary measures to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our community.

We understand that these are trying times and thank you for your cooperation in helping us to protect all those in our care against COVID-19.

Key points in this update:

  • Bene Campbelltown and Bene St Clair are in lockdown due to confirmed COVID-19 infection and closed to visitors, with the exception of end-of-life support visits. Bene’s COVID-19 Outbreak Management Plan has been implemented.
  • Bene Italian Village remains in lockdown due to confirmed COVID-19 infection and closed to visitors, with the exception of end-of-life support visits. Bene’s COVID-19 Outbreak Management Plan has been implemented and we are working closely with both SA Health and the Commonwealth Government specialist clinical teams who are on site to support Bene and provide guidance based on their assessments.

Why is this infection so dangerous for older people?

The risk of serious illness from COVID-19 increases with age. The highest rate of fatalities is among older people, particularly those with other serious health conditions or a weakened immune system.

For people living with dementia or some form of cognitive impairment, the ability to follow instructions to reduce their risk of contracting COVID-19 or to alert others about potential symptoms may be a challenge. This is especially so where there is a limited capacity to communicate verbally or express pain and discomfort.

To protect older Australians and those with compromised immune systems, we all need to work together to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

How are our services affected?

  • Residential Aged Care – Bene Italian Village, Bene Campbelltown and Bene St Clair are currently in lockdown due to confirmed COVID-19 infection and closed to visitors, with the exception of end-of-life support visits.
  • Lifestyle & Wellness – The Bene Padre Pio centre-based program and the Bene Italian Village centre-based social program and dementia-specific respite program are suspended until further notice due to confirmed COVID-19 infection. Please contact Bene if you would like to arrange alternative lifestyle and wellness support at home during this time.
  • Home Care – We continue to provide safe, professional services at your home.

What are we doing to ensure the safety of our community?

As a long-established specialist aged care provider, we have extensive infection control measures in place to protect the health and wellbeing of our vulnerable older Australians as well as those who care for them. To further minimise risk to our community, Bene has implemented the following measures.

  • Entry into any Bene facility will be prohibited by any person to which any of the following conditions apply:
    • The person is prohibited from entering a Residential Aged Care Facility by reason of an Arrivals direction (for more information, refer to https://www.covid-19.sa.gov.au/travel/entrycheck-sa)
    • During the preceding 14 days, the person had known contact with a person who has a confirmed case of COVID-19 or is awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test.
    • The person has undertaken a COVID-19 test and is awaiting the test result.
    • The person has a temperature higher than 37.5℃, or has a history of fever or chills in the preceding 72 hours, or symptoms of acute respiratory infection such as a cough, sore throat or shortness of breath, or loss of taste and smell.
    • The person has not been vaccinated against the 2021 seasonal influenza (does not apply to a child aged 6 months or less). Proof of vaccination is required,
    • The person has not been vaccinated against COVID-19 (a person is vaccinated against COVID-19 if the person has received at least two (2) doses of a COVID-19 vaccine approved by the TGA or all dosages of a recognised COVID-19 vaccine in accordance with the dosage schedule recommended by ATAGI for that vaccine) (does not apply to a child aged 12 years and 2 months or less). Proof of vaccination is required.
  • Adherence to appropriate hygiene and social distancing measures as outlined by the Australian Commonwealth and State Departments of Health
  • Additional staff training and assessment of infection control procedures specific to COVID-19
  • Implementation of additional cleaning and disinfection measures
  • Restricted visitor access to our residential care homes as detailed below.

What are the current visitor guidelines?

Of paramount importance are the health and safety of our residents and those who care for them. As such, Bene is continually adapting its COVID-19 visitor guidelines as the situation evolves.

Due to confirmed COVID-19 infection, Bene Italian Village, Bene Campbelltown and Bene St Clair are currently in lockdown and closed to visitors, with the exception of end-of-life support visits. Bene’s COVID-19 Outbreak Management Plan has been implemented and we are guided by both the State and Commonwealth Departments of Health on COVID-19 management and the eventual safe reopening of our residential care homes.

We appreciate your support and understanding during these challenging times.

What are we doing to minimise the impact of social isolation?

We understand that the requirement for social isolation at this time is particularly challenging for older people. To support those in our care within our residential care homes and out in the community, Bene is implementing some extra services including:

  • A prehabilitation program and additional reablement exercise programs to boost physical and mental wellbeing and minimise the risk of deconditioning. Accessible from the comfort of your own home or within our residential care homes, the friendly therapists of Flex Care are at hand to help you stay physically active during this time.
  • In our residential care homes, we have partnered with CareApp to bring our residents, carers and families together over an easy-to-use mobile platform that enhances social connectivity and communication and offers greater peace of mind for our families.
  • An increased focus on offering safe and engaging social distancing-friendly activities to meet the individual needs and preferences of our residents with the provision of additional Lifestyle Workers.
  • Window of Love visits at each of our care homes in addition to face-to-face visits that adhere to current COVID-19 restrictions.

We also encourage friends and family to keep in touch by making phone or video calls, sending postcards, photos or artwork or filming short videos to share. There are many creative ways to let your loved ones know that you care.

What can you do to help keep our community safe?

We can all help slow the spread of COVID-19 in Australia.

To protect yourself and others, you must:

For more information

National Coronavirus Helpline
If you’re concerned, you can call the National Coronavirus Helpline for information and advice about COVID-19. The line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

1800 020 080

If you require translating or interpreting services, call 131 450.

Latest Public Advice
For the latest public advice, visit https://www.health.gov.au/health-topics/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov

General Coronavirus Advice 
SBS video resource – English
SBS video resource – Italian

To keep up to date with the most recent Bene news and COVID-19 related announcements, please take a look at our news pages.