“Aged care taking strong action to protect vulnerable people”
The peak body for non-profit aged care providers Aged and Community Services Australia (ACSA) has responded to comments made today by the Prime Minister and Chief Medical Officer, saying the sector is taking strong action to control the spread of the virus and protect the vulnerable people in its care.
The Commonwealth Guidelines and State directives providers are operating under are all still in place and being complied with. They have not changed. In some cases, individual providers have made difficult decisions to make further restrictions depending on their individual circumstances including location and individual needs of residents.
“We have taken a very strong position in aged care because we are looking after vulnerable people,” CEO of ACSA Patricia Sparrow said.
“Given the terrible circumstances we face, results to date indicate the situation has been managed as well as can be expected, but we need to remain vigilant. We require further clarity from the government because the current restrictions are causing confusion and distress.”
“This is an unprecedented situation. Not all decisions will be perfect because we are balancing a serious pandemic with keeping people socially connected. There are increased mental and health supports available across Australia to try and limit the social isolation many are experiencing. “
“Providers are very focussed on supporting the mental and spiritual health and wellbeing of residents. We care. That’s why we provide aged care.”
“These decisions haven’t been made lightly. We are acutely aware of the hardship being faced by many families and residents in aged care. Our first priority will always be the health and safety of the vulnerable older Australians in our care.”
Bene is constantly reviewing our policy in line with the changing situation and are preparing for the next phase of the Covid 19 emergency. SA Health are amending their policies daily and Bene will move in line with the legal requirements and the latest SA Health advice to Aged Care providers.
Bene continues to:
- Test everyone’s temperature – staff, medical and allied health staff and those families visiting palliative care residents
- Ensure that the residential aged care sites have prominent hand sanitising available and other personnel protective equipment available
- Provide information that details the current legal requirements of entry
During this time Bene has also:
- Facilitated window visits – loved ones are seeing their family through external windows
- Committed to extra staff to replace volunteers by redeployment of community care staff to residential sites
- Increased allied health support engaged in lifestyle programs at all sites
- Implemented technological aids such as CareApp and FaceTime-scheduled phone calls
- Provided regular updates for families
To the residents of our Homes:
We urge you to continue washing your hands frequently, covering your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze and if you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your elbow, keeping 1.5 metres away from each other when possible and accept large gatherings are no longer being held.
We thank you for your ongoing patience and support and respect for our caring staff.
Chief Executive Officer