Residential aged care re-opening to visitors from Thursday 23 April

Today we are pleased to announce that we are easing visitation restrictions that were in place outside of end-of-life and compassionate care.

As we navigate this challenging journey, Goodwin’s COVID‑19 Taskforce has been reviewing the situation on a daily basis. We have been acutely aware of the stress and pressure that visitor restrictions and other infection control measures have placed on our residents, families and staff. Decisions to implement these measures have not and are not taken lightly and are in place with the specific intent to save lives.

We must maintain strict parameters around visitation, as below, for residents’ ongoing protection and to abide by the Prime Minister’s directives handed down on 18 March 2020 and the ACT Health directives announced on the 23 March 2020 and which stay in effect until further notice.

Today’s decision is in line with the ACT’s continued strong position, and updates from the Prime Minister and National Cabinet earlier this week.

We will continue to monitor the situation. Please be aware that visitation restrictions may be heightened again at short notice if the situation escalates, or if directed by health authorities.

Visitation parameters from Thursday 23 April

From Thursday you are welcome to visit within the following protective measures.

  • Visitors must meet the below criteria set out by the Department of Health.
  • One visitation of short duration per day per resident, with no more than two people visiting at one time. (This is a directive of the Department of Health and includes visitors such as family solicitors and religious/pastoral care.)
  • Visits must be booked in advance through the concierge and will be arranged to limit the number of people in the facility at any given time.
  • Visiting hours are between 7am and 7pm. Concierge staff will be present during these times to screen visitors.
  • Visitors must sign in at entry, answer the screening questions, have their temperature checked, and provide evidence of influenza vaccination (see below).
  • Visitors must be over 16 years of age or otherwise approved for entry by the Director of Nursing (This is a directive of the Department of Health.)
  • Visits must be conducted with respect to social distancing and in the residents’ room or outdoors on the site, or in a specific area designated by the facility rather than communal areas where the risk of transmission to residents is greater.
  • Please only bring foods or drinks that are prepackaged and with unbroken seals, such as chocolate gifts.

Only visitors meeting the below criteria will be allowed entry

The following are government-enforced rules for any person entering a residential aged care facility during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • The person has an up-to-date vaccination against influenza and provides written evidence of such.
    • The Department of Health identifies appropriate evidence as a statement or record from a health practitioner; or an immunisation history statement available from Medicare online or the Express Plus Medicare mobile app.
  • The person does not have a temperature higher than 37.5 degrees or any symptoms of acute respiratory infection.
  • The person does not meet the Government self-isolation criteria.
    • That is, the person has arrived in Australia from overseas in the last 14 days; or the person has had contact with a person who has a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the last 14 days.

Please know also that for the protection of residents we are also continuing to screen all staff daily for the above. No others are allowed entry unless they are an essential contractor, medical professional or emergency services worker, and who meet the screening criteria.

Thank you very much for your patience to date. We understand that you are going through anxious times, and we greatly appreciate your understanding of the challenges Goodwin has also faced. We will continue to work with you as the COVID-19 journey continues.