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News update
22/07/2021
News update

COVID outbreak: resources to assist providers

NDS’s COVID-19 hub is a one stop shop with links to authoritative advice and resources to assist providers.
News update
21/07/2021
News update

SA COVID-19 Update: Level 5 lockdown restrictions

The South Australian Government announced a Level 5 stay at home order for seven days from 6:00pm 20 July following the latest outbreak of COVID-19.

VIC COVID-19 Update: New five-day lockdown

Reads: COVID-19 News Update

15/07/2021

What you need to know

  • Victoria will enter a five-day lockdown from 11.59pm Thursday, 15 July
  • COVID-19 case notifications are required by several authorities
  • Disability workers supporting people with disability by providing essential care are authorised workers
  • Providers of disability residential services must implement PPE protocols and restrict visitors

Victoria will enter a five-day lockdown from 11.59pm Thursday, 15 July until 11.59pm Tuesday, 20 July. Disability support workers assisting people with disability by providing essential care are recognised as authorised workers.

There are just five reasons to leave home:

  1. One person per household per day can shop for essentials like groceries, medicine and necessary supplies, limited to 5km from home.
  2. To exercise for two hours per day within 5km of home, with one other person
  3. For authorised work or permitted education.
  4. To provide care and caregiving
  5. To receive a vaccination

Household visitors are not permitted unless an intimate partner single bubble exists.

Facemasks must be worn at all times other than at home or if an exemption applies. Only authorised workers may leave home to work.

Disability services restrictions

The following restrictions apply to disability settings as detailed in the Table of Restrictions in the Premier's statement.

Community and non-residential service providers

Essential non-residential services including in-home support are permitted if the support cannot be provided online.

Supported employment services are permitted where activities are identified in the Table of Restrictions Authorised Worker List.

Residential service providers

Residential service providers must implement visitor restrictions:

  • Visitors are allowed for permitted purposes only such as end-of-life care
  • No more than two visitors per day excluding dependents of a visitor can be permitted if care cannot be arranged.

PPE requirements

Authorised disability support workers must wear a surgical mask that always covers the nose and mouth, indoors and outdoors.

Interim guidance received by NDS from the Victorian Government applies until formal guidance is received. 

All residential disability staff, contractors and volunteers must wear:

  • surgical face masks and eye protection (face shields are preferred) when supporting COVID-19 negative residents and correct hand hygiene must be maintained.
  • P2/N95 respirator, eye protection (face shields are preferred), disposable gloves, disposable fluid-repellent gowns and maintain correct hand hygiene with low-high risk suspected and confirmed COVID-19 cases during any activity.

In-home support workers should follow these same PPE requirements.

Monitoring and testing

Residential and in-home support providers should closely monitor emerging exposure sites and arrange for immediate testing as needed.

Providers must implement organisational COVID-positive protocols while testing and isolation is carried out.

In reach testing request emails should include the name of the resident, any symptoms and relation to exposure sites.

Email the DFFH COVID Readiness and Response team at . This email is monitored seven days a week between 9.00am and 5.00pm.

For after-hours confirmation call the Coronavirus hotline (1800 675 398) which is open 24 hours, seven days.

Reporting a confirmed case

Please notify the following authorities immediately:

  • NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission. Complete and submit the COVID-19 notification of event form.
  • Notifiable Incident Report to WorkSafe within 48 hours of COVID-19 case confirmed in any person who has been at the worksite.
  • The Health and Safety Representative at the work premises
  • All Victorian DFFH Transfer providers should continue to report through their existing channels.

NDS will keep providers up to date as information, such as DFFH fact sheets, come to hand.

Providers are reminded that access to the Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine has been increased.  We encourage you and your staff to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

Useful links

Contact information

For any enquiries, please contact Heather McMinn, Disability Sector Consultant, , 0448 395 495