The Public Health Unit of the Department of Health and Human Services (Victoria) has today advised us that the status of the COVID-19 outbreak at Kirkbrae Presbyterian Homes Residential Aged Care Facility has been changed from Active Surveillance Mode to Enhanced Surveillance Mode.
This change in status is a significant step forward in the management of the COVID-19 outbreak and means that all residents and staff at Kirkbrae have now been cleared of COVID-19 infection.
As a result, several changes to the way we will be managing the care within the facility can be made.
- Residents will be able to move around the facility and are no longer required to be isolated in their rooms. Social distancing measures will still be in place when they are outside their rooms.
- Staff will now only be required to wear a surgical mask and a face shield while caring for residents
- Staff will still be required to observe very rigorous hand hygiene practices
- Residents will be encouraged to wear a mask when they are outside their rooms
- Residents will continue to be required to dine in their rooms
The entire facility has been “deep cleaned” over the past week and enhanced cleaning measures will remain in place.
We will be screening residents and staff by checking temperatures and monitoring for any symptoms and recording this at least daily over the next 14 days. Swabbing for COVID-19 will only occur if any resident or staff member exhibits the symptoms associated with a COVID infection. Staff who have any illness will be prevented from attending work.
Under Stage 4 restrictions in place across metropolitan Melbourne we are still restricted from allowing visitors into the facility except on compassionate grounds.
Only four residents remain away from Kirkbrae at other facilities and it is hoped that they will return early next week.
The patience and support of all residents and their families is sincerely appreciated as we continue on the road to recovery from the outbreak.
Despite this very pleasing news today we will remain extremely cautious and vigilant over the coming weeks to ensure that there is no second wave of infections at Kirkbrae.
The support of Eastern Health, the Departments of Health at State and Federal levels, the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission and their representatives has been greatly appreciated and remains in place.
The commitment, dedication and support of all Kirkbrae staff and our contracted service providers throughout the outbreak to date has been outstanding. We are very grateful to you all.
Rev Grant Lawry
Social Services Committee
Acting Chief Executive Officer