March 31, 2020
6/3/20 Careforce Update
CORONA VIRUS | COVID -19 UPDATE
There is a lot of concern and anxiety about the rapid spread of the COVID 19 Virus. I am writing to you to provide an update on how we can work together to reduce the risk ofinfection.
The World Health organisation have confirmed that the Covid-19 is a virus spread by droplet – which means coughing, sneezing, talking, singing, laughing.
HOW CAN YOU PROTECT YOURSELF?
a. Regular and thorough hand washing before and after meals and going to the toilet or touching your face. Be mindful NOT to touch your face or hair.
b. Use of an alcohol based sanitizer if you can’t access soap and water.
- RESPIRATORY HYGIENE| An information brochure is attached.
a. Covering coughs and sneezes and careful disposal of tissues.
b. Apply and remove your mask correctly without touching the front.
- PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT | if clinically indicated including eye protection. Don’t forget that they goggles can be cleaned so consider how you will transport them once they have been used. ‘GOOD INFECTION CONTROL IS THE BEST PROTECTION’ NSW PUBLIC HEALTH UNIT
- SOCIAL DISTANCING is very effective to reduce the potential of infection. This means if someone is unwell, keep a distance of 1.5 metres between yourself and others, as this is outside the range the virus can travel. Use PPE if delivering care.
- APPROPRIATE USE OF PPE| only when there is a clinical indication, so supplies are available for acute settings.
- REDUCE CLOSE CONTACT| In general, avoid hugging kissing and handshaking.
- VIGILANCE IN CLEANING| Maintain commonly used hard surfaces regularly using a neutral detergent. There is no need for anti bacterial cleaners.
- VACCINATION | Ensure you arrange for an influenza vaccination when they come out in April. They won’t stop the COVID -19 but they will protect you from other viruses that have been identified in the northern hemisphere this winter.
- ESCALATION| Call the office if you have seen a patient who is unwell or causes concern AND record in the Case note.
IF YOU ARE UNWELL
- Please notify Regal as soon as possible so we can work together to develop a plan.
- If is mild, it is recommended to stay at home until you feel better and notify Regal, so we can discuss a plan of care with you.
- If you are feeling very unwell, call your GP in advance and let them know you are coming in for a review- special arrangements are being made to keep people who are unwell out of crowded waiting rooms.
WHAT REGAL IS DOING TO PROTECT YOU
The Regal Office team are:
- REFERRAL SCREENING |Screening all new referrals.
- PATIENT LETTER (Attached) An update is being sent to all DVA patients informing them that if they are unwell, to notify Regal so we can through screening determine whether a medical review is indicated. Patients are aware that if they display any sign of upper respiratory tract infection that the attending field staff will provide them with a surgical mask. Please stand back and direct the patient to apply the mask.
- ADDITIONAL MASKS| Regal Nurses will be supplied with some additional masks to provide to people who are unwell OR to wear yourself if there are clinical indications. NB International advice is masks are not required unless a person is unwell.
- HAND SANITISER | Issuing you with additional alcohol based hand sanitisers.
- REGULAR BRIEFINGS| Regal maintains regular contact with all lead agencies listed below inform our policies and procedures.
As a community we will all get through this outbreak if we apply the simple steps outlined above. We will update you as the situation evolves.
The Regal Team are here to support you in the safe delivery of care. If you have questions that are raised from this letter, that you are unable to answer using the references included, please contact me.
Encl. Cover your cough and sneeze poster
***This excellent short VIDEO provides all the key information
The NSW Public Health Unit
Chief Medical Officer, Australia
World Health Organisation
Central Disease Agency CDC
National Corona Virus Help Line 1800 020 080