St Brigid's Green Visitor Policy
We are delighted to inform you that there is now government support for more access to visit loved ones, and children may also now visit. An announcement from the Australian Government on the 19th June 2020, together with an updated NSW Health Public Health Order released on 23rd June 2020, confirms that restrictions on residential aged care facilities related to COVID-19 are being eased to respect the personal welfare and mental health of residents.
All visitors and team members who have travelled to Melbourne in the previous 14 days (from 11 June 2020) will be denied entry to St Brigid's Green.
Outlined below is a summary of what has changed:
- Residents can have up to two visitors at any one time. There is no limit on the number of visits allowed in a day or the length of each visit.
- Visit are to be in the resident’s room, outdoors or in the dedicated meeting rooms. All communal areas including dining and lounge areas are to be avoided, unless prior arrangements with the Director of Care and Services has been made.
- A support person can provide care and support to the person they are visiting, including physical care and support.
- Children under the age of 16 years are now able to visit residential aged care facilities.
- Service providers may visit the facility, including but not limited to: hairdressers, beauty therapists and the like; legal advisors; mental health providers (e.g. diversional therapists and music therapists); and allied health providers (e.g. podiatrists).
- Residents may now leave their residential aged care facility for a range of reasons, including but not limited to: exercise; attending small family gatherings of up to 20 people (as long as physical distancing can be maintained); receiving or accessing health care; receive end of life or palliative care; visit a service provider, including hairdressers and beauty therapists; legal or financial advisors; attending a funeral; and visiting another residential aged care facility.
- Residents who are part of a family group (e.g. couples or siblings) or close friends can leave the facility together.
- Groups of residents cannot go on external excursions (e.g. a group of residents cannot be taken on a day trip to the beach).
Importantly, visitors, aged care staff, health workers, volunteers and anyone else entering a residential aged care facility will still not be allowed to enter the facility if they have not had the 2020 flu vaccine. There may be some exemptions, as outlined in the Australian Government’s Flu Vaccination Requirements for Aged Care Facilities (PDF).
These changes to visits mean our online booking system will no longer be required to visit our villages. However, all visitors to the aged care home must complete the entry screening process at our reception before entering. Our protocols for entry screening have changed and are detailed below.
St Brigid’s Green Visitor and Outing Protocols
1. Visitors should not be anyone who:
- is unwell
- has returned from overseas in the last 14 days
- has visited Melbourne in the last 14 days
- has had contact with a person with COVID-19 in the last 14 days
- has travelled to a COVID-19 hot spot in the last 14 days
- has a fever (37.5 degrees or more)
- has a cough, runny nose, sore throat, breathing difficulties or sudden loss of smell
- has not had the 2020 flu vaccination (unless it is unavailable to you or you have an exemption).
2. It is critical that visitors stay away if you’re unwell or have been in contact with someone with COVID-19. Visitors should also:
- visit a resident in the resident’s room or outdoors
- avoid communal spaces
- make sure the resident has no more than two visitors at a time, including doctors
- wash or sanitise your hands before entering and leaving the facility
- stay 1.5 metres away from residents, staff and other visitors where possible
3. Aged care visiting and outing times are preferred between 9.00am and 5.00pm Monday to Friday and 9.00am to 1.00pm on Saturdays and Sundays when we have a receptionist on site. We understand that visits and outings outside of these core hours will be necessary from time to time but ask visitors to still report to reception and complete the entry screening process.
4. If you arrive for a visit outside of the core hours you will need to use the intercom to speak with one of our care staff on the floor who will let into the reception area to complete the sign in procedure. Please be patient, however, as our staff are busy looking after your loved ones and may take some time to respond to the intercom.
5. On arrival at the village we ask all visitors to report to reception for mandatory screening and sign in. This will now include the requirement to take, record and enter your own temperature as part of the process. During the sign in you will be prompted to confirm the floor you wish to visit, once this is done you will be provided a four (4) digit lift passcode which will allow you to access the desired aged care floor and a printed visitor pass. Please wear the visitor pass at all times for benefit or our staff. Please note the lift codes will be changed from time to time.
6. If, for any reason, you are unable to successfully complete the entry screening process due to not having a current flu vaccination you will be required to remain outside the front door and the resident will be bought to you to take part in the outing.
7. Visitors must produce valid confirmation of flu vaccination as part of the screening process. This can be kept on file after the first visit. From May 1 2020, this requirement is law and includes children.
8. At all times 1.5 metres social distancing is to be maintained.
9. Once you have signed in and received your lift passcode, sanitised your hands thoroughly and make your way to the main lift and enter the code.
10. A maximum of four people can people travel in a lift at any time provided 1.5m distancing is practiced.
11. Upon arriving on the floor, all visitors are to sanitise their hands again then make their way directly to the resident’s room on the agreed path of travel. All visitors are to remain the resident’s room.
12. If, during the visit, you wish to go outside or make an outing please use the main lift and avoid passing though ground floor common areas wherever possible. This means making your way as directly as possible either to the village green or past reception to the main village entry. Please do not linger in the common spaces or corridors on the ground floor.
13. At the end of your visit please return to reception and sign out. If you have elected to make an outing, involving taking a resident off site, we ask that before leaving the village you sign out at reception and when you return complete the sign in process again.
For the ongoing safety of all residents, staff and visitors we insist that these protocols be followed.