Latest DSA update
Our priority remains the health, safety and wellbeing of our participants and employees and we appreciate your continued support and understanding during these challenging times.
We are implementing additional COVID-19 precautions across all our services based on the latest advice provided by NSW Health to all disability service providers.
As the spread of COVID-19 continues in Victoria, and in a growing number of areas of NSW, particularly South Western Sydney, these additional measures will help keep our participants, their friends and families, our employees and the communities we work in safe.
The new measures will include:
- Support staff wearing a face mask in all our services
- Updated site access controls and visitor guidelines
- A return to remote support in our SLES and DES employment programs
- Additional training and support for our staff
The use of face masks
NSW Health has recommended staff involved in supporting our participants should wear a mask to minimise the potential spread of infection. All DSA support staff will wear a face mask while at work until at least the end of July and we are in the process of ensuring all our sites have sufficient supplies on hand.
Visitors to DSA supported accommodation sites
All visitors to DSA supported accommodation sites will be asked to wear a mask during their visit until at least the end of July, regardless of where they live or where they have visited.
Until the end of July, any visitors who have been in the following local government areas in the previous two weeks will be asked to postpone their planned visit and reschedule to a later date:
As you can appreciate, some of our services support medically vulnerable people and we are asking all non-essential visitors to postpone their visit until at least the end of July, regardless of where they live or have visited.
If you are unsure of the current hotspot locations, please visit www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19 for the latest updates.
We will be limiting visitors at all sites until at least the end of July and we will be communicating clearly with our participants and potential visitors to request that visits be postponed until after the end of July wherever possible.
Measures such as phone or video calls may be utilised to help people keep in touch with family, friends or others and to assist in limiting visits to premises at this time.
As always, feel free to call your key contact person if you would like assistance accessing these resources or have any concerns about your family member or the service.
Remote supports for employment support
Given the current incidence of community transmission of COVID in the Sydney area we have returned to providing remote supports for our jobseekers in our SLES and DES programs until at least the end of July.
Additional training and supports for staff
The procedures and protocols DSA developed in the early days of the pandemic have served us well so far and it is really important that we remain vigilant and mindful of our site access controls, social distancing and enhanced hygiene requirements:
- External visitor guidelines
- Staff and visitor declaration form of symptoms and potential exposure
- Enhanced infection control, cleaning and hygiene practices
- Maintaining physical distancing, where possible
- Mandatory staff training, where applicable
- Staff shortage and employee mobility policies
- Special leave arrangements during COVID-19
- Temperature checks at specific sites
- Staff wellbeing and support process
To ensure our staff have access to the latest information we have developed a dedicated COVID resource site on our intranet for all staff as well as providing regular email and SMS updates.
Over the past four months we have all learned how to do things differently as we work together to stop the spread of COVID-19 and we’re going to have to continue to do things differently for a while longer.
Our top priority is safeguarding our participants and our employees and we continue to closely follow the guidance of the Department of Health (www.health.gov.au) and NSW Health (www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19) as we navigate the challenges COVID-19 brings. We will continue to provide further COVID-19 updates as we monitor the situation.
Please call your key contact person if you would like assistance accessing these resources or have any concerns about your family member or the service. Alternatively you can call our Connections team on 1300 372 121.
If you are concerned that you or someone you know may be infected:
- Please notify us ASAP so we can support you.
- There is a national 24/7 telephone service for people who are concerned about contact with a possible Coronavirus case. If you think you may be infected you can call the hotline on 1800 020 080.
- Suspected Coronavirus patients can present in person to a GP clinic, a dedicated respiratory clinic or to a hospital Emergency Department if they call ahead. Find a COVID-19 testing clinic
Previous DSA Updates
For the latest Australian Government updates, visit: https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert
The Department of Health has produced a series of easy read posters and simple explainer videos around Coronavirus, that are short but highly informative.