While we have been lucky in Western Australia to have avoided community spread of COVID-19, we can’t afford to be complacent.
It is a good time to remind everyone to follow the health advice – maintain physical distancing wherever possible, practise good hand hygiene and stay home if sick and get tested.
Remember to also check in when out an about in the community using the SafeWA app or a handwritten register. It is also a good time to consider getting a COVID-19 vaccination booster shot if it has been six months since you completed your second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
Southern Cross Care (WA) has been working hard to ensure that all our residents, clients and staff are fully protected against COVID-19 through various controls, including vaccination, good hand hygiene and physical distancing. We have installed a Zipline system for managing electronic contact tracing and temperature checking for all staff and visitors to our metropolitan sites and are looking at expanding this system across other sites and services.
We have had guidelines in place from the start of the pandemic to ensure the safety of our vulnerable residents. At various times, these guidelines have been reviewed and adapted in response to directives from the WA Department of Health, the Australian Government Department of Health and our own team of experts in aged care to keep your loved ones safe.
Our visitor policy for residential care homes was updated on 5 November 2021 and now allows for a maximum of four visitors at one time. Visitors are permitted in residents’ rooms and outdoor areas only.
All our staff working in residential care homes are now double vaccinated, as compliant with the legislation, and residents are now being offered booster shots provided by visiting health staff from the Australian Government. Booster shots are not mandatory but are highly encouraged if it has been at least six months since a person’s second COVID-19 vaccination.
We have recently written to our home care clients about the need for all employees, contractors, and volunteers employed by Southern Cross Care (WA) to have had their first COVID-19 vaccination by 1 December 2021 and to be fully vaccinated by 1 January 2022.