26 July 2020
Dear Mercy Place Keon Park staff, residents and families
Notification of lockdown and COVID-19 Testing for residents and staff – scheduled for 2pm Monday 27 July 2020
As you would be aware we have been working with the Department of Health (Commonwealth) since we were notified that a staff member tested positive for coronavirus two days ago. While the risk was regarded as very low and we were not required to implement outbreak procedures we have nevertheless been implementing a range of enhanced surveillance measures to remain vigilant in protecting our home.
This afternoon we were advised by a doctor from the Department of Health and Human Services Public Health Unit that we should proceed to restrict all visitors and have residents isolate in their rooms as further precautions.
While I know this will create some anxiety and concern for residents, families and staff, I want to assure you that these precautions have been implemented in response to single case reports in other homes and the additional health and safety measures are a very sound approach to minimising the risk of further infection. I also wish to assure you that there are no further cases at the home.
We will be taking the further precaution of having all staff wear full personal protective equipment. We will also be undertaking a deep clean of the home and implementing further precautions so we can minimise any potential transmission risk.
I have also been advised by the Department of Health (Commonwealth) that they have engaged Sonic Pathology to provide coronavirus testing for all residents and staff tomorrow (Monday) at 2pm as a further follow-up precaution.
A coronavirus test involves a relatively quick and simple swab of the throat and the nasal cavity, but can cause some brief discomfort. If you or your loved one are concerned about the test, please let us know as soon as possible. Please also be assured it is standard procedure to test everyone at a home where there has been a positive case.
You will be aware that testing is one of the best ways to trace the spread of the virus in our community and I know many of you will feel reassured that our home will have access to this additional safety measure.
It is likely that staff will be busier than usual as we implement a range of health and safety actions. We will contact you directly if there is any immediate need for concern and I will be back in touch via email as soon as I have further information.
Thank you for your support and understanding.
Mercy Place Keon Park
Last reviewed July 26, 2020.