13 August – Impact of the COVID-19 outbreaks in NSW

NSW Health has asked us to change some of the ways that we deliver our services due to the COVID-19 outbreaks in NSW. These changes are designed to stop the spread of the virus and keep everyone safe.

Check to see if you have been to one of the hotspots

As well as the outbreaks in South Western and Western Sydney, there are also COVID-19 hotspots around NSW. You can find an up-to-date list of the hotspots on the NSW Government website. This tells you if you must self-isolate, get a COVID-19 test or watch for symptoms of COVID-19 if you have been to any of the places listed. You should check this every day as the list of places is changing daily.

Our staff will be wearing a face mask

If you receive support from us:

• In your own home
• At a Northcott centre or facility
• In a disability group home or apartment
• In the community

All of the Support Workers and Therapists will be wearing a face mask whilst they support you.

Housing customers in Sydney or near the Victorian border

If you live in one of Northcott’s houses in Sydney or near the Victorian border, we have some additional advice from NSW Health. They are asking that we limit the number of visitors coming into the houses to only essential people. This means that the only people who can go into the houses are:
• Northcott staff
• Staff of other disability, health or care services providing essential support to our residents
• Tradespeople working to repair items or equipment that is critical to the operation and safety of the house
• Visitors who are essential to support the mental health of any resident

We understand that this means you may be currently excluded from enjoying visits from friends and family, but will encourage and support you to contact them through video apps and phone calls.

This requirement is in place until at least the end of August and may continue further than that depending on what the NSW Government tells us.

Our measures to keep safe continue

Across Northcott we are also keeping other measures to stay safe:

• All of our centres, homes and facilities have strict checks in place to ensure that visitors are kept to essential people only and that they are screened on arrival.
• All staff undertake a self-evaluation process around their health every day before coming to work. If they are sick, they stay at home and get tested for COVID-19. We also check their temperature before they are allowed to enter our centres, facilities and houses.
• Infection control, hygiene and hand washing are all enforced and all staff have received extra compulsory training in these areas.