The following correspondence has been communicated with our family members in residential aged care.
I trust that you are all keeping safe and well during this period. I am sure you are aware of the recent Coronavirus outbreak at the Crossroads Hotel in Casula, and also the outbreak at the Picton Hotel and four positive cases identified at Narellan Town Centre.
As I outlined in my most recent correspondence, our battle against COVID-19 is not yet over. We know how quickly it can spread and presents a major risk to our residents and staff.
The recent events at Crossroads Hotel and at the Picton Hotel is a case in point where NSW Health is working to identify all people who had visited these venues for testing and protection.
The risk to Carrington and to our residents is the close geographic proximity of these hot spots to where we are. One cannot be certain as to where individual people have been prior to visiting our facilities. To this end we are vetting our staff and ensuring they are tested for COVID-1 and are isolated if they have been anywhere near these hot spots.
I am pleased to advise that to date no staff member has tested positive and our protocols and processes will ensure that remains the case.
However we have assessed the risks for our residents and as it stands currently with our visitor protocol the risk is considered high.
Therefore in order to ensure the health, safety, and well being of our residents are protected at all times, we have decided to suspend our current visitor protocol for the next three weeks effective from Thursday 16th July 2020 to Friday 7th August 2020. This decision will be subject to review at that time.
During this period and only by special appointment family members are able to visit their loved one who are Palliative or who have clearly established a pattern of involvement in providing resident care and support.
Residents who have medical appointments that they need to attend during this period, families will have a prior arrangement with the Facility Care Service Manager and must observe all COVID-19 measures that are currently in place.
Residents will refrain from visiting local shopping centres, restaurants, and cafes including our own Rocksalt Restaurant.
We appreciate that these measures will be difficult for some and upsetting for others, and it is likely that we will hear from some families expressing their frustration over the decision to temporarily suspend visitation for three weeks and we will assess the situation after that.
However, we must remember this is in the best interest of residents in our care and for me and my team, it will be more upsetting if positive cases are occurring in our facilities.
I appreciate your cooperation and understanding and reiterate my assurance of our commitment to reducing the risk to the residents.
Should you require further information please do not hesitate to contact the Care Service Manager of your facility.
Please see below for information that was sent to our Residential Care families this week from the Chief Executive.
I trust that all families are keeping safe and well during this period.
To date, I am very pleased to say that our team at Carrington has responded incredibly well to the unprecedented challenges of COVID-19. Our dedicated staff have all played a role in protecting the safety and well-being of our residents, and I want to thank them for their hard work and determination.
I also want to thank the families of all our residents for your continued support and understanding throughout this period, because without that level of support, we would not have succeeded. Notwithstanding that, our battle against COVID-19 is not yet over. We know how it can spread quickly and presents a major risk to our residents and indeed the entire aged care sector.
The events of COVID-19 of the past few days in the state of Victoria is a perfect example of how quickly the virus can spread within a community cluster. In order to continue to protect our residents, the current visiting protocol that we have put in place a few weeks ago will remain in place until further notice. Our outbreak management plan is up to date and ready to be activated, if and when necessary.
It is essential that we all remain alert, and if you are experiencing respiratory and flu like symptoms or you have returned to NSW for a visit to Victoria please ensure that you do not visit our facilities, and instead keep yourself isolated and get tested for COVID-19.
This action together with exercising proper hygiene practices, including continually washing hands and exercising social distancing will ensure that we will continue to remain safe.
Once again thank you for all your support and cooperation by working together to protect our residents, your loved one.
As a result of recommendations from both the Australian Government and NSW Health, Carrington have imposed the following restrictions from the 17th March, 2020.
These measures are to ensure the safety and well being of our residents are top of mind during this coronavirus outbreak in NSW.
Families should have received a letter from the Chief Executive outlining these changes.
We have asked families to NOT visit our facilities for the foreseeable future.If you do need to urgently visit, please contact your Care Service Manager via phone to discuss your options.
All visits from schools, day cares, volunteers, church groups, and pastoral care volunteers have been suspended for at least the next two weeks
External outings will be decided on a case by case basis, to ensure our residents are not exposed to potential infection from members of the local community
Inter facility group days have been postponed for now, and we will be monitoring this on an ongoing basis.
The Wellness Group and any Community Care outings have been postponed for the time being
All client services will continue as normal
Independent Living residents (ILU) who have returned from international travel are required to self isolate in their units for 14 days
Family members of ILU residents are encouraged to postpone visits to their loved ones in the village if they have: had contact with someone who has tested positive to coronavirus, have returned from overseas travel themselves, or are experiencing flu like symptoms
ILU residents who are experiencing flu like symptoms are required to contact their GP for a test for coronavirus and notify Carrington staff
ILU Activity groups have been suspended
The Carrington Recreation Building, pool area, and Gym are closed until further notice
In the interest of the health and wellbeing of our residents and staff, from Thursday 19th March until further notice, our Rocksalt restaurant will be closed for dine in service.
Rocksalt will be available for takeaway service only from Wednesdays to Sundays 10.00am-2.00pm.
Our Rocksalt delivery service for our village residents will remain as usual and will still operate from Wednesdays-Sundays.
We understand that this is a difficult time for all involved, and that the situation has the potential to change quickly.
Should you have any questions, you can contact the Customer Service Team on 1300 590 590.
Aged just 101, Sheila Murdoch has been playing music for as long as she can remember. Having recently moved into our Mary Mackillop facility, Sheila was delighted to be reunited with Richard, another Mary Mackillop resident.
Richard and Sheila started playing music together for our residents at Werombi Court many years ago! Over time they were joined by Lawrie, Kevin, and George. For the past 20 years, this special group has been known as ‘The Melody Makers’, and have been a regular fixture at Carrington ever since.
Together, they have taken great pleasure in providing musical entertainment for countless Carrington residents. Their passion for their craft is evident to see, and it’s an absolute joy to watch them play music together.
Sheila is looking forward to continuing playing music with her friends for many years to come!
Our residents from Grasmere Terrace recently enjoyed a visit to the local Bunnings for their regular intergenerational program. This time, the residents had the opportunity to interact with the children from Elderslie Family Day Care.
This program allows us to bridge the gap between the two generations. Intergenerational programs are of huge benefit to both our seniors and the children, as they not only maintain connections to the local community, but have also proven to have positive effects on both young and old, including those living with dementia.
Our residents and the children were able to interact through spending time together reading story books, and playing with playdough.
We are looking forward to continuing with this intergenerational program!
We would like to extend our congratulations to Madeleine on her new role! Madeleine has been a valued part of the care team at our Mary Mackillop Facility, and for the past three years has been completing her nursing degree at Western Sydney University.
Madeleine has been an asset to our team, displaying a caring and compassionate nature. She has excelled in her care for our residents, and was always very professional. The staff at Mary Mackillop especially held Madeleine in high regard.
During her time with us, Madeleine took the opportunity to learn as much as she could about the complex and chronic nature of aged care residents, and how to bring a wonderful quality of life to those that she cared for.
She was able to develop her time management skills, her leadership through ongoing mentoring with our RN’s and Team Leaders, and her skills in wound management whilst working under the guidance of the RN team.
It has been great to see her graduate and officially become a Registered Nurse. We wish Madeleine all the best as she takes up a position as a Registered Nurse at Dubbo Base Hospital. Congratulations again Madeleine, and best wishes for your future endeavours!
Mary Mackillop staff at Madeleine’s farewell
Madeleine with her present from the Mary Mackillop team- a nurse’s watch with her name engraved on it
Our Paling Court residents ventured off to Berrima recently, to visit the Historical Court House and Jail.
A delicious morning tea of Macadamia Tart, Pear and Apple Torte, and freshly ground coffee was enjoyed by the group. The residents then went on to look at the local churches, and stopped to enjoy the beauty of these historical buildings.
It was on wards then, to Moss Vale showgrounds to view the old horse stables and cattle yards, where the residents enjoyed a picnic on the bus. The last leg of the trip was down through Robertson, where the beautiful green scenery was on full display, as well as the cows in their pastures!
Our Volunteer Bus Driver Jerry is ready to go!
The beautiful historical buildings of Berrima
The beautiful historical buildings of Berrima
The beautiful historical buildings of Berrima
One of our Paling Court residents with Mandy McEwen, Leisure and Lifestyle staff member
Our Mary Mackillop residents had a great trip up to the Blue Mountains last week. The first stop was at Wentworth Falls, where the residents stopped at a lovely lake filled with bird life to quickly stretch their legs.
It was onward then to Blackheath, where the group stopped at Govett’s Leap Lookout to view Bridal Veil Falls cascading down the mountainside. Unfortunately due to the lack of rain it was more a trickle than a waterfall, but still an awe inspiring site regardless!
The residents had the opportunity to enjoy a picnic lunch while staying nice and warm dressed in scarves, gloves, and beanies. Many of the residents had not had the opportunity to visit the Blue Mountains area before, so it was a wonderful introduction to a stunning part of NSW.
On the way home the residents stopped in at the information centre, where a movie was showing that displayed some of the stunning photography of the local area.