COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Update August
The Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews declared and enacted a State of Disaster on Sunday the 2nd of August to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. Our hope is that this declaration and all the strict rules that come with it, will bring down the number of new cases across the state of Victoria.
Along with the community of Melbourne, the disability community has been placed under an enormous amount of disruption. Since February, we have been working diligently to ensure the health and safety of our clients, families and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are constantly safeguarding to ensure we are best prepared if a client COVID-19 positive situation were to arise. We will continue to do all that is possible to help keep clients, families and staff safe.
Throughout Able Australia we have undertaken a number of initiatives to ensure the health and safety of clients, families and staff. From procuring 1.2 million certified P2 face masks for the disability sector to a team of volunteer seamstresses producing more than 400 protective gowns to collaborating for the local production of face shields.
Our Incident Command Centre meets daily to monitor and ensure all required items are actioned promptly in the rapidly evolving environment.
If you or a loved one require any assistance during this difficult time, please call Able Australia on 1300 225 369 and we will do what we can to help.
We developed the COVID-19 Management Plan and setup an Incident Command Centre, which meets daily to monitor and respond to the rapidly changing environment. We have provided ongoing staff training for infection control, audit worker hand hygiene procedure and the donning and removing of PPE.
In addition, a Rapid Response Team has been setup. The Rapid Response Team is a carefully selected team that is on standby until the need arrives if we have a positive COVID case. The team have received comprehensive COVID-19 training, including; correct procedure for applying and removing PPE, disposal of waste, management and procedures if a suspected COVID-19 positive situation arises.
Able has implemented strong infection control policies including;
- Social Distancing
- Hand hygiene – as well as conducting audits on this procedure
- Installed automatic hand sanitisers at all Able sites
- Increased cleaning of high touch areas
- Face masks (Victoria only)
- Face shields (Victoria only)
Yes, since February Able has been continuously procuring PPE for staff and clients including;
- 950,000+ P2 masks for the disability sector.
- 24 litres of locally sourced hand sanitiser.
- 400 protective gowns sewn by a team of Able volunteers.
- 400+ face shields produced in Melbourne.
No, clients are not required to wear face masks inside their homes or Able accommodation however, some clients may choose to wear a face mask.
If a client is outside of their residence the Department of Health and Human Services have highlighted exceptions for not wearing a face covering as outlined here.
Whilst the pandemic has been extremely challenging for our clients, they are in good spirits. The environment has enabled clients to learn how to use assistive technology for the first time. This has been a fantastic opportunity for clients to connect with family and friends outside of their home whilst building their confidence.
Clients are connecting with those in their home and outside via Able’s Zoom baking sessions which have been a hit.