Mansfield Shire Council is concerned that some people might be missing out on important support as they have opted to stop receiving Commonwealth Home Support program (CHSP) services during the Coronavirus restrictions.
Mansfield Shire Mayor, Cr Marg Attley OAM said Councillors and staff endorsed the government message that in-home care services are being delivered in accordance with the required safety practices during Coronavirus.
“We had about 15% of our home support services recipients opt out of using the service. It’s understandable that some may be concerned about having a carer come to their home when for so long the message has been not to associate with other people to reduce the risk of infection,” Cr Attley said.
“We know adjusting to the restrictions has been difficult for some people and we also had to change the way we deliver some of our services, for example we couldn’t deliver our social support groups face-to-face”.
“These include Spring Club, Men’s Group, Thursday Social Group, Easymovers and Aquamovers. Our team is excited to say they are now planning the return of these popular groups,” she said.
“Our staff have continued to provide weekly contact, including to those who have opted out of the service, to undertake food, security, health and wellbeing checks.
Cr Attley said home care clients could be assured that the Community Care worker visiting their home is taking all necessary measures to ensure both the worker and the client stay safe.
“This includes following advice from Australia’s Chief Medical Officer about when to use protective equipment,” she said.
She said the fact that most of the time the aged care worker does not have to wear personal protective equipment such as masks, gloves, aprons or gowns or protective eyewear, might be confusing for some clients.
“In addition, it’s useful for clients and their families to know that any Community Care worker displaying symptoms of COVID-19 is not allowed to work - and just to be sure, workers are being tested,” she said.
“Our Meals Delivery Program, known in Mansfield as Meals on Wheels has seen an increase in demand. This is another opportunity for clients to connect with someone else and for a check-in to take place.”