Date published: 
7 October 2020
Media type: 
Media release
Audience: 
General public

The Victorian Aged Care Response Centre continues to provide the robust response effort required to protect our most vulnerable senior Australians living in aged care from the COVID-19 pandemic.  

  • There have been zero aged care facilities in Category 1 for more than a month. There were 13 facilities in the Response Centre’s ‘high risk’ category in early August when the Centre first began operating.
  • The work of the Response Centre has also seen the number of facilities with outbreaks continue to fall.
    • The total number of aged care outbreaks since 1 January 2020 is 176; there are now 42 active outbreaks.

Daily update

  • There was one new case today associated with residential aged care facilities in a staff member at the Uniting AgeWell Preston facility.
  • The 7-day moving average of new cases is 0.25.
  • There has been no new case in an aged care resident since 26 September 2020.
  • Active cases have now dropped to 57 in Victoria today:
    • 28 residents
    • 17 staff
    • 3 others, close contacts which are neither staff nor residents of the facility.
  • There have been a cumulative total of 4628 cases in aged care in Victoria:
    • 1963 residents
    • 2033 staff
    • 632 close contacts which are neither staff nor residents of the facility.
  • Total number of deaths associated with aged care outbreaks in Victoria is 643.
    • There are 2 aged care related deaths reported today.
  • The Response Centre’s robust infection prevention and control efforts continue to be a priority across metropolitan and regional facilities:
    • Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel have conducted a total number of 652 preventative support visits to date.
    • The Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission has conducted a total of 246 ‘spot checks’ on aged care facilities.
    • Western Health have also provided assistance in prevention measures at 37 aged care facilities.
    • 40 personnel from Australian Medical Assistance Teams (AUSMAT) have completed 174 visits to 80 facilities.
    • 12 National Aged Care Emergency Response (NACER) teams, totalling 70 personnel, and 7 State Government teams with 45 personnel, have filled several roles across the sector, including nursing, personal care, and cleaning.
    • 101 Residential Aged Care Assistants and Safety Observers have been deployed by the Response Centre to 24 facilities.

The new outbreak at Uniting AgeWell Preston has involved one staff member. This is the second outbreak experienced by the facility. The first outbreak in July also involved a single staff member and was well managed and controlled quickly.

The staff member is now in isolation and the facility is in full lockdown.

Staff and resident testing has commenced and, at this stage, no other resident or staff have tested positive. Contact tracing is also underway to identify the source of the staff member’s infection.

The DHHS Public Health Unit and the VACRC have met with the facility and implemented the outbreak plan to ensure the ongoing needs of residents and staff are met.

Weekly update

To stabilise and strengthen the Victorian aged care workforce during the pandemic, the Commonwealth has funded a surge workforce to assist aged care facility managers with more than 31,000 shifts being filled.

  • 22,339 shifts filled by Recruitment, Consulting and Staffing Association (RCSA) staff.
  • 5768 shifts filled by Healthcare Australia staff.
  • 1898 shifts filled by 96 Mable contractors.
  • 601 roles filled by Aspen Medical staff including Clinical First Responder deployments.
  • 495 shifts filled by 35 HealthX staff.
  • 426 shifts filled by 59 Torrens staff.

The Victorian Aged Care Response Centre is a joint arrangement between the federal and state governments, bringing together more than 150 staff from 28 agencies.

Its priorities are focused on:

  • care and safety of residents
  • safety of staff
  • unifying effort across agencies
  • rapid identification and prioritisation of outbreaks
  • rapid response and intervention
  • prevention of outbreaks
  • effective communication and engagement
  • preservation of the health care system.

Contact

Victorian Aged Care Response Centre contact

Contact information for the Victorian Aged Care Response Centre.

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