COVID-19 Comms HCAH Victorian clients

15 September 2021

Dear Clients,

HammondCare At Home is working with our staff and contractors to ensure that COVID safe practices are being implemented to keep you and the wider community as safe as possible from the spread of COVID-19 and at the same time provide you with the care and services you need.

Given current restrictions and changes, we thought it timely to share with you what is currently in place and what measures you can put in place as well for your own benefit and safety.

Contractors and HammondCare services

As a HammondCare At Home client, your services are usually provided by HammondCare staff. However, occasionally contractors provide these services.  A ‘Contractor’ is any third-party provider that is engaged to deliver services or activities that are funded under HCP or CHSP such as gardening, cleaning and home maintenance.  Contractors are not employees of HammondCare, though HammondCare remains responsible for the services they deliver to you.

Contractors under current Public Health Orders

The Victorian Public Health Orders allow for contractors to attend to your home, however there are rules that need to be in place:

  1. Contractors may need to apply for a permit, depending on where they live or work. Some contractors are choosing not to do this, which means that they are not able to work.
  2. Contractors need to wear a mask at all times.
  3. There are limits on how many contractors can be present in your home or on your property.
  4. Contractors must have a COVID safe plan in place.
  5. If working inside, contractors should not be in the same room as you whilst working.

Contractors are generally not required to have a COVID vaccination., however it is strongly encouraged.

Contractors, like all workers, should not be working if they have any COVID symptoms, have been to a casual or close contract venue at the times listed or are isolating awaiting the results of a COVID test.

What is HammondCare At Home doing to ensure your safety and needs are met?

HammondCare has been calling clients to understand their specific circumstances and wishes regarding the provision of contractor services. If we have not had the opportunity to chat with you yet, please know that we will be calling you soon.

If you would prefer not to have contractors attend your home for the moment, that is fine. Your Care Manager will discuss other ways that we might be able to support you without using contractors.

If you would like to have contractors resume services, it is important to understand what we are doing to ensure your safety.

  1. HammondCare will regularly discuss your needs with contractors, as well as assessing possible risk factors that they need to be aware of.
  2. If your preferred Contractor is not able or unwilling to work at this time, your Care Manager will discuss other options that are available.
  3. HammondCare is working with Contractors to ensure that they have a permit to work (if required) and a suitable COVID safe plan in place and that they follow this plan at all times when attending your home. If you have concerns with what contractors are doing, please let your Care Manager know and we will address this with the contractor.
  4. HammondCare strongly supports the COVID vaccination program. We are encouraging all contractors to get vaccinated.

What can you do to stay safe when a Care Worker or contractor are visiting you?

There are also a number of steps that you can take to best ensure your own safety:

  1. If a contractor asks screening questions prior to service, similar to our Care Workers, be as open and honest as you can. Remember they may be seeing other people after you and need to protect themselves and others as well as you.
  2. Wear a mask when contractors are present.
  3. Stay in another room away from the contractor while they are working.
  4. Make sure the contractor wears a mask at all times.
  5. Ask the contractor about their COVID safe plan.
  6. Practice good cough/sneeze etiquette.
  7. Wipe down frequently touched surfaces like door handles, telephones and light switches.
  8. As much as you want to be friendly and hospitable, please do not invite contractors to come in and have refreshments with you whilst these current restrictions are in place. The contractors will not be offended.

What can you do if you need more help or want to change your mind about your contractor visits?

Of course, you can change your mind at any time and either have a contractor resume service or cancel a contractor. Please feel free to give your Care Manager a call on 1800 826 166 about this or to raise any questions you may have. We are here to help you.

Thank you once again for the privilege of serving you and your family.

Warm regards

Signature Bay Warburton
Bay Warburton
General Manager, HammondCare At Home