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Aged care forums cancelled

Aged care worker

Council has cancelled two aged care forums planned for this week due to coronavirus COVID-19.

Monday 16 March 2020

Mount Alexander Shire Council has cancelled two aged care community forums scheduled for Thursday 19 March, due to the outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

“To help slow the spread of COVID-19, health authorities have advised all non-essential, organised gatherings of 500 or more people should be cancelled from Monday 16 March,” said Lisa Knight, Director Corporate and Community Services, Mount Alexander Shire Council.

The federal government also advises reducing visitors to all residential aged care facilities and remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to protect vulnerable Australians.

“Given older persons and those with chronic illnesses are more vulnerable to the coronavirus, we’ve taken the precaution of cancelling our aged care forums to reduce the risk of infection in this group,” she said.

“We planned the forums with the intention of providing information on the Commonwealth aged care reforms, and to seek feedback on aged care services in our shire.

“We’ll now be taking steps to gain input from our clients, their carers and interested parties using other methods such as phone and email,” said Ms Knight.

While the World Health Organization (WHO) has announced COVID-19 is a pandemic, Australia does not currently have widespread community transmission of the disease.

At this stage, Council-run facilities such as community centres, sporting and recreational facilities remain open with some adjustments to operations to implement hygiene and safety measures.

Yet the situation could change in the days, weeks and months ahead based on further medical advice from the Victorian and Australian governments.

At the moment people are encouraged to practice good hygiene, and continue going to work, sending kids to school and going to the local shops if you’re well and free of symptoms.

If you’re unwell stay at home. Phone your GP or the hotline if you think you’ll need medical attention. The COVID-19 hotline is available 24 hours, 7 days on 1800 675 398.

Specific requirements are in place for people who have returned from overseas, or think may they have been in close contact with a confirmed case of coronavirus.

For more information on COVID-19 visit the Australian Government Department of Health www.health.gov.au and the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services www.dhhs.vic.gov.au.

To register your interest to provide feedback on aged care services contact Council on 5471 1700.

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