GM Operations Eleanor Young says Summerset has comprehensive plans and protocols available from the last nationwide COVID-19 lockdown and some have been recently updated following discussions with aged care colleagues in Melbourne.
She said these included infection control measures, staffing plans, outbreak plans, cleaning schedules, and a large stock of personal protective equipment for staff.
There haven’t been any cases of COVID-19 amongst Summerset residents or staff to date, but Ms Young said they weren’t complacent.
“We have seen what’s happened over in Victoria, and we are planning ahead to keep our residents and staff safe and well.”
Ms Young said Summerset was proactively planning for staff shortages as they are a real risk if COVID-19 surges. Summerset has plans in place to address staffing shortages and village management teams were working now to ensure they could call on casual workers, agency staff, DHBs, other Summerset villages, and local aged care providers if needed.
Keeping residents connected was a huge focus for Summerset staff during the April and May lockdown. The introduction of iPads into all care centres ensured residents could Zoom call their families and friends.
Activities Coordinators and Diversional Therapists concocted some great physically distanced activities to keep residents engaged, and Summerset provided daily puzzle sheets, an online Wellness Centre with a host of activities, and distanced happy hours amongst other events. With access to remote sing-a-longs, church services, and even celebrity speakers Summerset is making sure that residents stay engaged to keep spirits up. With this second lockdown, many of these activities are being introduced nationally and in villages again.