Management of suspected or confirmed COVID-19 among individuals who receive disability, home care or other personal support services should be in alignment with management of any other individual suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19.
- If a client in a residential facility or their own home has fever or symptoms of an acute respiratory illness(sore throat, runny nose, shortness of breath, fatigue or cough), even if mild, health advice should be sought (from the individual’s GP or by calling the National Coronavirus Health InformationLine on 1800 020 080) to exclude COVID-19 as well as to resolve any other health issues. The individual’s GP may be able to provide advice via telehealth.
- If the client has suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and is able to remain at home, ensure they remain isolated from others in the home. This includes staying in a different room from other people or being separated as much as possible. If they are required to be in same room as others, provide them with a supply of surgical masks (if they can safely wear them).
- Make sure they do not share a room with people who are at higher risk of suffering severe COVID-19 disease, such as elderly people and those who have heart, lung or kidney conditions, and diabetes.
- Contact your local PHU for advice (1300 066 055).
- If assistance is required about the use of NDIS participant funding to organise alternative accommodation for appropriate isolation of the resident (as directed by public health authorities), contact the NDIS Contact Centre on 1800 800 110
Visitors who do not have an essential need to be in the facility or home should not visit while the individual is isolating
Provider staff should follow infection prevention and control guidance developed for the disability, home care and other personal support sector.
Providers should also consider which services are essential to provide and those which can be temporarily suspended to limit contact and exposure.
Triggers for action
Providers should consider the various triggers which may indicate the need to seek testing (including travelling to a healthcare or other facility for testing), or management or isolation of people with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. Considerations may include:
- the clinical severity of the respiratory illness, the age of the individual, the person’s disability, and any comorbidities that may increase the risk of complications e.g. underlying respiratory disease or impairment, heart disease, diabetes
- the ability to maintain infection prevention and control procedures in the facility (including home environment), including whether adequate PPE is available to staff/carers
- the vulnerability of other residents or household members e.g. elderly carers or those with immune disorders.