Coronavirus: information for Mercy Health Home Care Services clients and families

Mercy Health Home Care Services is committed to minimising the risk of infection for our clients, their loved ones, and our staff.

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Current case updates

We currently have no active cases of coronavirus.

Mercy Health has a well-established process in place to respond if a client or staff member tests positive to coronavirus, or is a close contact of a confirmed case. Our process is informed by a team of infectious diseases and infection prevention and control experts as well as industry best practice, and involves working closely with relevant government authorities every step of the way. Our response includes rapid contact tracing and getting in touch with any client or staff member who may be at risk of infection. If you are considered a close contact of a confirmed case, we will contact you.

Alert for Shepparton clients

A small number of coronavirus cases have been reported in the broader Shepparton community. Mercy Health staff and suppliers are required to follow Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) advice to get tested and quarantine if they have visited a high-risk location. We urge clients and their families to follow the same advice and to get tested if they have visited any of the listed locations, or if they have any symptoms, however mild.

Keeping you safe

Mercy Health Home Care Services is continuing to visit clients, so that you can continue to do the everyday things you need to do. Your health, wellbeing and independence are important — even during a pandemic. That is why we are taking every possible precaution to make sure our staff can continue to support you safely and in line with government directives.

Masks and eye protection

There are different requirements for masks and eye protection depending on the state or territory you live in.

Victoria and Victoria/NSW border communities

As of Monday 3 August 2020, everyone in Victoria is required to wear a mask or face covering whenever they are outside their home. Our staff in NSW/Victoria border communities are also required to wear a mask at work.

The Department of Health and Human Services (Victoria) has also advised that staff working in a community setting in Victoria must also wear eye protection as an extra layer of defense against the spread of coronavirus.

In line with these requirements, Mercy Health Home Care Services staff in Victoria and in NSW/Victoria border communities will be wearing surgical masks and protective eye glasses when they visit your home.

Regional NSW

Staff members in regional NSW will be wearing a surgical mask if they are providing care in a situation where they cannot maintain a physical distance, or if a client has recently visited Victoria, a NSW/Victoria border region, or a declared hotspot.

ACT

Staff members in ACT are not required to wear masks or eye protection at this stage because of the current low rates of community transmission.

Please note

If you are hard of hearing, or have difficulty communicating with our staff while they are wearing a mask, our staff are permitted to remove their mask for short periods to talk to you. If they are providing care and cannot maintain a physical distance, they must keep their mask on.

Clients do not need to wear a mask while our staff are in your home, however you can do so if you feel more comfortable.

What you can do to guard against coronavirus

Our top priority is the health and wellbeing of everyone we care for, as well as our staff. There are some very simple things everyone can do to help prevent the spread of infection:

  • Wash your hands regularly.
  • Cough or sneeze into a tissue or the crook of your elbow.
  • Let us know if you are unwell or feeling ‘not quite right’.
  • Let us know if anyone else in your household is sick.
  • Let us know if you or anyone in your household has been tested for coronavirus and is waiting for the result of that test.
  • Be cautious with your contact with others, including family and friends (this is particularly important for Victorians currently in Step 2 restrictions).
  • Keep a distance from our staff unless you need help with your personal care.
  • Let us know if you need help with additional cleaning of surfaces in your home, and frequently touched items.

If you are unwell with a fever or respiratory symptoms, please contact your Local Office as soon as possible before your appointment in case we need to reschedule.