Revised Visiting Hours & ARRANGEMENTS

27 April 2020 Updated 12 May 2020

 

Dear Family and Friends,

 

Update: Infection control measures at SPC

 

Our Infection Control Committee has met again today. Like most in the community we are heartened by the fact that in recent times the broader discussion has shifted to one of restoring some freedoms rather than withdrawing them. You may also be aware of the comments made Prime Minister in the past week regarding some aged care facilities where visiting opportunities have been withdrawn entirely. We believe that we followed the advice of the National Cabinet, the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC), the Queensland Department of Health, the Aged care Quality and Safety Commission. In doing so have maintained visitor access in one form or another at all times. The visiting restrictions are something that will be required to be in place for as long as physical health checks are required for all who enter the premises.

 

Whilst our committee has today committed to easing slightly some of our restrictions the Commonwealth and the Queensland Department of Health are imposing an additional requirement on ALL visitors, staff and contractors who enter the buildings. Everyone MUST have a current flu vaccination as of Friday 1 May 2020. Not only must you have had the vaccination but you must provide proof. This can take the form of a certificate from the doctor or pharmacy that administered the vaccine or you can use the immunisation register on the Medicare App (a word of caution on the App however – the details are not always uploaded immediately. Seven days post my vaccination and details do not appear on my Medicare record – so this may not be the best way to get immediate confirmation.)

 

Those that haven’t been into the facility recently may not realise that we started an electronic sign-in process in the last week. The reason behind this is to track the compliance regarding the flu vaccination and moving forward when we don’t have to provide the physical health check it provides the opportunity to extend the visiting hour past the office hours. By signing the last step of the process you are signing a declaration to say you have:

  • Had a 2020 flu vaccination and provided a copy to SPC (post 1 May 2020)
  • In the past 48 hours (2 days) not experienced any of the following
    • A fever
    • A cough
    • A sore throat
    • Shortness of breath (other than normal symptoms associated with an ongoing non-contagious illness)
    • Generally felt unwell
  • To the best of their knowledge they have not been in contact with anyone who has been tested for the COVIS-19 virus or placed into self-isolation during the preceding 14 days
  • Neither I nor any member of my household have returned to Australia from overseas in the past 14 days

 

So what is changing?

 

Visiting is still by appointment. Bookings can be made by either emailing visiting@spcagedcare.org.au or calling reception 38007188 during office hours (8:30-4:30 M-F)

  • Entry times each day (Monday to Sunday) will be restricted to
    • 9:00am – 11:15am
    • 2:00pm to 4:15pm – doors will be locked outside these hours. The risk to anyone is deemed to be high if they have had more than 15 minutes close contact with someone who is infected. For this reason we are requesting that you limit your visit to no more than 15 minutes.
  • Visits will be limited to
    • no more than two people at a time
    • Children under 16 are asked not to enter under the latest guidelines
    • Visitors will be restricted to either the residents’ room or the external spaces located near the coffee shop; the rotunda between Rose and Lily wings; and the Pine Hill bbq area. Visitors are not permitted in any other common areas within the facility. Whilst in these areas social distancing guidelines should be practiced. This has not changed but is really important – the original imposition of only one visitor came after complaints that visitors were not respecting this request.
    • Only one visit per day permitted – that is each visitor is restricted to one entry per day.
    • As the number of community based cases of COVID-19 continue to decline we will revise our recommendation regarding length of visits. Our current aim is to minimise the risk to our residents by spreading visitors throughout the facility rather than having clusters of people in one or two wings. CURRENTLY OUR RECOMMENDATION IS A VISIT OF NO LONGER THAN 30 MINUTES.

 

Changes to the resident’s activity program will impact on our assisted virtual visits. Small group activities will increase both in frequency and numbers attending (maximum of ten per activity where social distancing of 4 square metres allows). This means that the Activities staff will not be available to assist with virtual calls before lunch time. Booking can be made as per previous arrangements. This change only affects assisted calls – families and residents who have mastered their respective app are naturally free to continue their visits at whatever time suits.

 

Finally and most disappointingly a plea and a warning. Weekends are a busy time at St Paul’s. Last weekend almost every available time was booked. The Sisters manning the entrance have volunteered their time to ensure that this service can be maintained. They recognise the importance of maintaining the relationship between the residents, their families and friends. On numerous occasions over the weekend this generosity was abused. Verbal attacks and failure to comply with simple instructions designed to keep everyone at SPC safe will not be tolerated. Such outbursts will not only place your ability to visit at risk but may result in greater restrictions particularly on the weekend. Please lets work together to ensure the best possible outcome for all concerned.

 

Once again a reminder that these updates are being emailed to the primary contact. Please share them with family and friends or alternatively refer them to our internet page www.spcagedcare.org.au which is being updated as the updates are release.