News

Home care and community during the COVID-19 pandemic


This page will continue to be updated when new information is available.

Goodwin home care services are continuing, and we are accepting new clients.

Changes to home care services

Because older people are among those at higher risk of serious illness should they contract COVID-19, Goodwin is taking protective measures very seriously. The best defences against the virus are social distancing and hygiene. Because of this, there may be changes to the way we do some things, including limiting person-to-person touch where possible. We will work with you on an individual basis.

Please also note that there may be some changes to your usual care team. We ask for your patience as we deal with the changing times and with the potential for staff changes due to school closures and illnesses.

Calling prior to visits

Our carers will be calling clients before entering the home, to ask if:

  1. you or someone living in your home has arrived from any international travel within the last 14 days; or
  2. you been in close contact with anyone who has travelled or has been diagnosed with COVID-19; or
  3. you or a member of your household has any flu-like symptoms at present.

If you answer yes to question 1 or 2, you meet the Government criteria for self-isolation, and we will explain what this means. If you answer yes to question 3, we will need to talk to you about whether it is safe to visit.
If anyone in your household, or with whom you have had close contact recently, meets these criteria then please call us to discuss immediately.

Visit cancellations

For clients with home care packages, we have temporarily relaxed Goodwin’s cancellation of visit policy so you need only provide 24 hours notice to cancel (reduced from 72 hours).

Contactless shopping

Carers can come to collect your shopping list and payment from your front door. On return, your shopping will be placed outside your door for you to collect, and the carer will phone you to tell you it’s there. If you require assistance to unpack your groceries, we will still assist with this.

Social support visits by telephone

If you feel better about it, your carer can continue social support visits by telephone instead of visiting in person. If you have access to technology, we can also set up video calling so we can see each other as we talk. All you need is your mobile phone, tablet or computer to get started.

We might also be able to put systems in place to help you keep in contact with family members while everyone is staying home, such as video calling on your computer or mobile phone.

Will Goodwin still take me to appointments?

Yes, we still offer transport services. We may ask you to sit in the back seat to practise social distancing during this time. Please keep in mind that the Government requests we all stay home as much as possible for the next while, to reduce the spread of COVID-19, but we will support you on essential trips.

Is it safe for me to have your workers in my home?

The long-standing and well-practised infection control procedures and policies that Goodwin has in place are appropriate for COVID-19 and are being strongly enforced, and continually reviewed as new information becomes available. Our staff are undergoing increased training in this area and your carers are equipped with personal protective equipment to ensure the effective management of infection control.

Our rule is that during this period no staff member is to come to work for 14 days if they have any flu-like symptoms or fever. The same applies for contractors. It is also mandatory for all Goodwin staff to get the influenza vaccine (this will occur over April and May).

Masks and protective wear

We are following guidelines from the Department of Health and ACT Health, which is that personal protective equipment such as mask gowns and goggles is only for use when providing services to people with symptoms of COVID-19. A carer may wear a mask or gloves in some cases, however it is not necessary to wear a mask if you are both healthy.

Safety sensors available

For extra reassurance, Goodwin is offering all home care clients to have ‘Billy Care’ electronic sensors installed in your home so that we can check to see that you are still active in the house and completing daily routines.

These are not cameras; you will not be watched! They are movement sensors only, which will send an alert to Goodwin if anything seems awry. Your nominated loved ones can be included in any alerts if you wish. Please contact your care coordinator if you would like further information.

This Billy Care system can be covered by your Home Care Package or Commonwealth support funding. Call your home care coordinator for more information.

Day clubs

Goodwin day clubs have reopened to small groups and our coordinators have contacted day club members to resume services. For more information, please contact the home care and community team.

Goodwin day clubs were previously closed to meet the Government’s bans on group gatherings.

What if I have more questions or need more support?

If you have questions or your situation changes, please contact our office:

  • business hours: 6175 5650
  • after hours, southside suburbs: 0423 261 488
  • after hours, northside suburbs: 0431 373 919.

For the latest, reliable information and resources on COVID-19, go to the Department of Health at www.health.gov.au or call 1800 020 080 for the National Coronavirus Health Information Line, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

We are monitoring the situation daily and will continue to provide updates as appropriate. Our approach is to manage the situation in a balanced, calm and measured way, and when required act swiftly and communicate clearly.

To learn more about Goodwin’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic:

COVID-19: Our focus on prevention