Date published: 
30 April 2021
Type: 
Subscriber announcement
Intended audience: 
Health sector

Vaccinating in-home and community aged care recipients and workers

The Australian Government is making it possible for in-home and community aged care recipients and workers to receive a COVID-19 vaccination quickly and safely.

In line with recent advice from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI), government has agreed that:

  • People aged 50 years and over will receive the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.
  • People aged under 50 years will receive the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

People aged 70 or over receiving in-home or community aged care services can access the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at:

  • GP clinics, GP respiratory clinics or Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services
  • state and territory AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine clinics.

People aged 50-69 years receiving in-home or community aged care services will be able to get the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine from:

  • 3 May 2021 at GP respiratory clinics and state and territory vaccination clinics
  • 17 May 2021 at GP clinics.

In-home and community aged care workers 50 years and over can access an AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at:

  • GP clinics, GP respiratory clinics or Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services
  • state and territory AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine clinics.

In-home and community aged care workers under 50 can access a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at:

  • state and territory Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination clinics.

The COVID-19 vaccine eligibility checker is being updated with information on vaccination clinics as they become available.

Information for in-home aged care workers and recipients is available on the Department of Health website, including a fact sheet and infographics.

COVID-19 vaccine webinar and Q&A – OPAN and Department of Health

The Older Persons Advocacy Network (OPAN) will host a webinar on Monday 3 May from 11.30am – 12.30am AEST to discuss updates to the COVID-19 vaccine rollout.

Panellists include Michael Kidd, Deputy Chief Medical Officer and Principal Medical Advisor from the Department of Health, who will provide an update on the latest information about the rollout to help senior Australians make an informed decision about being vaccinated. Additional panellists include Dr Daman Langguth, Clinical Immunologist and Immunopathologist, The Wesley Hospital and Val Fell, Member, National Older Persons Reference Group. The webinar is free of charge and a live Q&A will follow.

Register for the COVID-19 vaccine rollout webinar online.

NSW: Updated advice for residential aged and home care services

The NSW Government has updated their screening advice for residential aged and home care services.

From 27 April 2021:

  • staff are allowed to work if they have been to Perth or the Peel region since 17 April 2021, provided they have received a negative COVID-19 test result
  • staff who have been to these areas must continue to wear a mask.

Further information on the updated advice for residential aged care facilities can be found here and information for home care services can be found here.

Aged care providers are reminded to continue to stay up to date with advice and Directions on the NSW Health website and to check for these updates regularly.

Reminder – CHSP Emergency Support for COVID-19 Ad Hoc Funding Round closes on 30 June 2021

On 1 April 2020, the Department of Health opened an ad hoc funding opportunity to support CHSP service providers during the COVID-19 pandemic to:

  • expand their service capacity to meet client needs during COVID-19 lockdowns
  • retain key workforce
  • cover the cost of personal protective equipment
  • assist providers to modify service delivery models in accordance with State/Territory public health requirements.

The CHSP Emergency Support for COVID-19 Ad Hoc Round (GO3877) is closing at 2:00pm Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST), Wednesday 30 June 2021.

To give the Department sufficient time to consider and assess applications, you should submit your application no later than 31 May 2021.

More information about this grant opportunity, including a copy of the guidelines, application form and FAQs, can be found on the GrantConnect website.

Applications closing - COVID-19 Aged Care Support Program GO3844

The COVID-19 Aged Care Support Program grant opportunity announced as part of the Australian Government’s COVID-19 Health Package reimburses eligible aged care providers who are directly impacted by COVID-19.

Applications close – 2.00pm AEST on Monday 31 May 2021.

The Department would like to advise potential applicants that the Government has agreed that applications received up to the grant closing date of 31 May 2021 can continue to be assessed and reimbursement of eligible expenditure paid beyond 30 June 2021.

To apply or find out more information about this grant, visit the GrantConnect website and search for GO3844 COVID19 - Aged Care Support Program.

Aged Care - Trauma Awareness Training

Phoenix Australia is one of the organisations delivering trauma support to the aged care sector under the Aged Care COVID-19 grief and trauma response package. They are creating a trauma informed care framework for aged care, including training for aged care staff. Their introductory module Trauma awareness training is available now. It takes around 45 minutes, and you can complete the training as an individual, in a group, or download into your organisations LMS. This course aims to help you learn more about the simple things that you can do to help improve the quality of life of older people affected by trauma, while also supporting your own wellbeing.

Who should attend?

  • Aged care sector staff including personal care workers, clinical, nursing, allied health, and wellbeing staff, and leaders and managers
  • Aged care peak bodies staff

This course is designed to help you:

  • Understand of the nature of trauma and its impacts in aged care settings
  • Manage common responses to trauma
  • Use self-care strategies.

To access the free Trauma awareness training: Visit the workforce page on the Phoenix Australia Trauma and Aged Care Support and Information hub.

Linking to the Quality Standards:

Engaging in trauma informed care training may help you and your organisation to meet your obligations under the Aged Care Quality Standards.

Under the Quality Standards, providers are required to treat aged care recipients with dignity and respect (Quality Standard 1). The Standards also require providers to ensure that aged care recipients get personal care, clinical care (or both), that is safe and right for them (Quality Standard 3). Planning for an aged care recipient’s past trauma will help you to embed safe and inclusive practices in how you deliver care and services and provide more tailored care appropriate for that individual that keeps both care givers and the recipient safe.

In addition, the Royal Commission’s final report also includes trauma-informed service delivery as a common theme, including a recommendation that training on trauma-informed service delivery be provided for all workers who come in contact with people seeking or receiving services in the aged care system.

Resources

Poster: COVID-19 vaccination – Aged care workers COVID-19 vaccination poster