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Aged care access restricted

Two more aged care homes in Broken Hill went into lockdown this week to prevent the further spread of COVID 19.

Southern Cross Care (Broken Hill) announced the decision to restrict access to the Harold Williams Home and St Anne’s Nursing Home on Monday following outbreaks at its other facilities.

“The impact this is having on staffing and on our residents is significant,” CEO Zoe Tonkin said.

“To prevent this from happening at our other sites, we feel a lockdown is the best way to mitigate the risk and minimise the traffic through our facilities.”

At the time of reporting, there were 15 active COVID-19 cases at Aruma Lodge and Oasis Aged Care.

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Ms Tonkin confirmed that all diagnosed residents are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, with the majority already received their booster shots.

She said the facilities are taking necessary measures to minimise further virus transmission at the affected homes.

“Other residents in these facilities remain isolated to their rooms and staff are cohorted for care delivery to minimise the risk of transmission,” Ms Tonkin said.

“Staff are in tier three PPE (Personal Protection Equipment) when on-site and are rapid tested prior to each shift.

“Residents are also tested as required or directed by public health.”

The first case was diagnosed on January 2 and has since recovered.

Families who visit residents daily can organise a second daily visit, with those who assist with meals can continue the support.

The announcement also stated that any resident who are receiving active palliative care would be allowed visitors at any time.

Ms Tonkin urges the community to comply with COVID-safe practices and get tested when required.

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