The Western NSW Local Health District has announced that residents in its 25 Multipurpose Service (MPS) facilities will be able to have care and support visits from their close contacts, with some COVID-19 measures remaining in place.
Executive Director Operations, Mark Spittal, said there would continue to be restrictions on visitors to all facilities, including MPS to help control the spread of COVID-19.
“We are very conscious of how vulnerable older people living in our MPS sites could be to COVID-19, so while we’re delighted to be able to reinstate visitors, there will be ongoing restrictions, which may vary from site-to-site depending on local circumstances.
“Residents will be able to determine who comes to see them but there can be no more than two visitors per resident during a day, although those visitors can come at the same time. Children are still not able to visit, unless there are exceptional circumstances.
“Importantly, from 1 May all visitors to aged care residents will have to show that they have received a 2020 influenza vaccine.
“This year we face the double threat of needing to contain both COVID-19 and influenza, so this new measure is really important.
“Visitors will need to show some form of vaccination evidence to local staff. This could be a statement from their doctor, their Medicare immunisation record or they could use the Express Plus Medicare app.
“For visitors who are likely to come frequently, local staff will organise a register so that this doesn’t have to be done repeatedly.
“As with visitors to all health facilities, people coming into MPS sites will be subject to temperature checks, and a short COVID-19 assessment questionnaire.
“We know that both residents and their family and friends have missed being able to visit over the last few weeks, but we’re also grateful that the measures we’ve taken have contributed to the limited spread of COVID-19 to date.
“Our health teams at the MPS sites will be able to assist with any questions residents or visitors have about the resumption of visits.”