Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Response
Information correct as of 25 March 2020.
It is vital that we protect our community, which includes our residents, customers and workforce from any outbreak including the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
Our priorities are:
- protecting our residents, customers and workforce by minimising the spread of the virus through our community as much as possible.
- ensure we are fully prepared if any member of our community has tested positive to the virus, so we can contain the virus, care for those infected and action the appropriate isolation requirements.
Site Entry Requirements
RESIDENTIAL CARE HOMES
In line with the Government measures to keep our community safe, ACH Group has made the difficult decision to tighten the restrictions on access into all ACH Group Residential Care homes.
Effective Saturday 21 March, visitors will not be allowed to enter while restricted access is in place.
Please be assured that specific plans will be developed for exceptional circumstances, such as end of life care and this must be discussed directly with the site manager. We understand that visits in these cases are extremely important and will be arranged in such a way to ensure that safety is maintained.
Restricted access to residential sites will be in place until mid April, when it will be reviewed by ACH Group in line with the status of COVID-19 virus.
We are exploring alternative means of communication, such as FaceTime, Skype, SMS, and email to keep residents updated and in contact with loved ones.
We will continue to maintain essential services during this period of restricted access (with social distancing instructions and strict contractor declarations), including:
- Health professionals
- Medication and food delivery
- Essential plant, system & equipment repairs, fire equipment compliance.
From 1 May 2020, all visitors must have been vaccinated against Influenza.
New admissions to residential sites will still be considered on a case by case basis.
To comply with the Emergency Management (Residential Aged Care Facilities) (COVID-19) Direction 2020, any resident who leaves a Residential Care home for any other reason not related to medical or dental treatment will be prohibited from re-entering. Staff will work with residents and their families to understand the reason for leaving to see if they can explore alternate options.
ACH Group has made this decision after lengthy and extensive consideration and with the knowledge that although this will impact the ability to connect with loved ones in residential care, the overriding and most important consideration is the health and safety of residents and workforce.
Thank you for your co-operation and understanding.
OTHER SITES (HEALTH CLINICS, COMMUNITY SERVICES OFFICES, CATERING AND CORPORATE OFFICES)
To stop the spread of the virus we ask that no one (including all the ACH Group workforce) enters an ACH Group site if they, or anyone living under the same roof as them, has:
- is self-isolating, as per the state and federal government guidelines
- been diagnosed, being tested or awaiting to be tested for Coronavirus (COVID-19)
- been exposed to someone diagnosed, being tested or awaiting to be tested for Coronavirus (COVID-19)
- have symptoms of Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Fever of greater than or equal to 37.5C OR history of fever (e.g night sweats, chills) AND acute respiratory infection (e.g shortness of breath, cough, sore throat) or are unwell
You will be required to sign a declaration upon entry.
Indoor communal space closures – retirement living
In line with Department of Health’s social distancing recommendations, ACH Group is temporarily closing all indoor communal spaces at all retirement living sites in South Australia and Victoria. This is to minimise the spread of the virus through our community including residents and workforce.
As per Government advice, closures will be effective from 26 March 2020. A likely re-opening date will be provided with further updates.
Closure covers indoor spaces ie:
• Community halls and centres
Outdoor spaces such as community gardens, dog park and BBQ areas remain available.
ACH Group is closely monitoring the SA Health and the Australian Government Department of Health updates and acting in accordance with their recommendations. We are also reviewing our pandemic plans in line with updates, to ensure we are prepared, if necessary.
Until 30 April, all exercise groups and social programs will be cancelled in line with SA Health’s social distancing guidelines. We apologise for the inconvenience and are in the process of contacting all customers affected by this change.
HEALTH – EXERCISE GROUPS
We understand keeping healthy during this time is important and we are looking at ways of supporting people while we are not running our groups. Session passes will be suspended until groups are reopened and any credit will remain in our system.
At this time 1:1 therapy services are still going ahead as we can fulfil the social distancing requirements and have health status screening in place for both staff and customers. However, we would only encourage accessing essential services.
Keeping people connected during this difficult time is a priority for us and we are actively investigating how we can continue to provide ways for our community to stay connected.
Single person social experiences, such as fishing, are not affected by this decision.
We also ask that everyone:
- follows good hygiene practices i.e. handwashing and coughing/sneezing into your elbow.
- self-isolates in line with current SA Health guidelines, as outlined below.
If you do need to self-isolate we will do all we can to help you stay in contact with your loved ones.
This situation is evolving and we will continue to provide updates in the news section of our website.
If you have any questions in relation COVID-19, please speak to the manager of your site or call 1300 22 44 77.
Thank you for your ongoing support and cooperation.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) – SA Health Guidelines
The following are the current recommendations from SA Health, which are endorsed by ACH Group about who should self-isolate for 14 days:
- Anyone returning/returned from overseas travel in the past 14 days
- All people entering South Australia via interstate travel from Tuesday 24 March at 4pm, will be required to isolate for 14-days from their arrival.
- Anyone with symptoms of Coronavirus (sore throat, cough, etc.)
- Anyone who has been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 must isolate themselves for 14 days after the date of last contact with the confirmed case.
If you become unwell (which may include):
- any respiratory symptoms such as coughing, shortness of breath
- sore throat
You must self-isolate and make an urgent appointment with your GP advising your symptoms and your travel history. You should wear a surgical mask if leaving home isolation. If you are tested for COVID-19, you should self-isolate until test results are received.
Please note – If visitors fall into a category above and should be self-isolating, they will not be allowed to enter ACH Group sites.
Further COVID-19 Information
The Australian Government Department of Health website provides general information on coronavirus (COVID-19).
For general information about Coronavirus (COVID-19), visit the Australian Government Department of Health website, https://www.health.gov.au/health-topics/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov
Or you can phone the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080. This service runs 24 hours a day, seven days a week. If you require translating or interpreting services, call 131 450.