Our response to COVID-19

In this challenging time Baptcare continues to draw on our our strengths - both in our organisation and the communities we work alongside - to prioritise the safety and wellness of our residents, clients, thier families and our staff.

We are actively monitoring the Coronavirus (COVID 19) situation and following the advice of the Australian Department of Health and the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services.

As we witness the growing impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) the broader team at Baptcare, including our aged care and retirement living communities and services are working alongside our residents, clients and staff.

Considering the developing nature of this situation Baptcare is continuing to implement measures for the safety and wellbeing of our residents, clients and staff in aged care.

Disability

Baptcare Local Area Coordination and Early Childhood Program services on behalf of the NDIA in Tasmania and Local Area Coordination services in South Australia.

All services will continue to be delivered and we are supporting participants of the NDIS by phone and skype (which has previously also a feature of our practice). We have ceased offering face to face meetings and walk-in services at our offices.

Our primary concern during this time is the health, safety and wellbeing of our customers and staff. We are taking all necessary precautions including additional staff training around COVID19 awareness and prevention including the practice of good hand hygiene and cough/sneeze protocols.

Baptcare staff hubs are closed to the public. Our Local Area Coordination and Early Childhood Program services will be solely home-based, rather than the normal combination of home-based/community-based.

If you have a Local Area Coordinator or Early Childhood Coordinator already, you can call them directly on their mobile number or call our 1800 number in the relevant states:

TAS Local Area Coordination: 1800 290 555

TAS Early Childhood 1800 290 555

SA: 1800 960 595 or baptcare.sa@ndis.gov.au

Or you can access more information via the NDIS Website and Facebook Page

Family and Community Services

Our primary concern during this time is the health, safety and wellbeing of our clients, families and staff. We are taking all necessary precautions including closing our offices for face to face meetings.

Our team recognises the importance of service continuity and we have been on the front foot establishing alternative arrangements to keep in contact with clients remotely via the use of technology tailored to their individual circumstances.

In situations where face to face contact is essential, we have put in place procedures to identify potential risks and minimise opportunities for exposure. This includes asking questions around a client’s wellbeing and maintaining physical distancing as per recommendations from the State and National Departments of Health.

Please contact your Case Worker for more information. Alternatively, you can contact our Customer Enquiry Centre on 132278.

Aged Care

Residential aged care communities

New residents

We continue to take new admissions and welcome new residents across our sixteen aged care communities in Victoria and Tasmania. If you or your loved one needs residential aged care, please note that we are suspending all physical tours. In the place of physical tours, we are offering an online or video tour, and are happy to answer any questions you have. You can contact our Customer Enquiry Centre on 132278.

Visitors

Families and friends will be able to visit residents in our residential aged care communities from 4th May 2020.

In late March the team at Baptcare made the difficult decision to begin restricting visitor access to our residential aged care communities for the wellbeing, health and safety of our residents and staff. We believe this measure reduced the risk of exposure to the virus and can confirm that there are currently no cases of COVID-19 in any of our aged care communities. As the number of new COVID-19 cases has reduced, discussion has turned in Government circles to lifting the current visitor restrictions in the interests of the mental and social wellbeing of aged care residents. There is no doubt that residents would cherish face to face contact with their loved ones and we would welcome the positivity this would bring to our communities. Equally, we must acknowledge that COVID-19 remains a risk and the Australian experience of the virus in residential aged care communities has been heartbreaking. It is a delicate balance that is forefront in our minds as we plan to ease the current visitor restrictions.

Prior to 4th May 2020, visits may continue to occur for end of life care and in exceptional circumstances after discussion with the community’s Residential Care & Services Manager.

Flu vaccination requirement for visitors

One of the key conditions included in our visitor protocols after 4th May will be the government mandated requirement that everyone entering a residential aged care community must provide proof of an up-to-date flu vaccination. All residential aged care providers are required to take reasonable steps to ensure that these directions are being followed. In order to gain access, you will need to provide proof of vaccination in one of the following ways

  • A letter or certificate from a doctor or pharmacist showing your name and the date of vaccination,
  • A printout of your Medicare online immunisation history showing you have received the influenza vaccination and the date you received it,
  • A letter or certificate from your employer and or a commercial vaccination provider engaged by your employer to provide influenza vaccination, showing your name and the date of vaccination. We encourage you get your influenza vaccination and obtain proof of vaccination prior to the commencement of visits to our residential aged care community.

If you are unable to have an influenza vaccination due to medical reasons, please provide a letter from your medical practitioner clearly specifying the medical reason to confirm this. You can find more information here.

In-home care services

We continue to provide care in the home. Our team will ask you some questions to ensure you and our staff remain safe and well.

Please contact your Care Consultant for more information. Alternatively, you can contact our Customer Enquiry Centre on 132278.

Day Therapy Centres

As of Friday 20 March 2020, Baptcare has made the difficult decision to cease all in-house day programs and overnight respite services. In addition, our social support programs, including bus outings, entertainers and attendance of school groups and volunteers will also be put on hold indefinitely.

Remaining socially connected and having access to respite is as important as ever. Baptcare also offers in-home respite which may be appropriate for you and provide you with the respite you need.

Please contact your Day Therapy Centre Manager for more information.

Further Infomation

The Australian Government’s Department of Health has issued a number of resources and guides on how you and your loved ones can stay informed and safe during your home isolation.

Daily case and situation updates  report on COVID-19 case numbers and the current situation in Australia and Overseas

Download the “Coronavirus Australia” government app in the Apple App Store or Google Play

Join the Australian Government WhatsApp Channel on iOS or Android.

You can contact Redcross Australia on their website

To keep up with the latest via SBS on their website, Radio and TV Presentations

The Telephone Interpreter Service (TIS).

For these resources and more please visit the Health.gov.au website.

Alternatively, you can contact our Customer Enquiry Centre on 132278.

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