There is a pandemic hotline to respond to questions and queries from our Melba community. The hotline number is 1300 MYMELBA (1300 696352). For all other community members, if needed please contact the DHHS Coronavirus 24-hour Hotline number: 1800 675 398.
Firstly, I trust this update finds you well and that you continue to remain safe during the coronavirus pandemic. As you are no doubt aware, the State of Emergency in Victoria has been extended until midnight 11th May 2020. This gives the Victorian Government the powers it needs to keep slowing the spread of COVID-19 and save lives.
I’m pleased to confirm there still have been no positive COVID-19 cases among people we support or our staff. While there are things we cannot control, I believe our precautions, infection control measures and the hard work of our staff have definitely helped keep people safe over the past four weeks. And the good news is we are starting to see an improvement in the rate of transmission of COVID-19 within the general community. But as the Premier has remarked, now is not the time for complacency. We still have a long way to go. As a community we must all work to consolidate these recent gains and ensure our health system is not overwhelmed.
Part of the State Government regulations in place include limiting visits to people living in disability group homes. (See our previous updates.) During social distancing, the internet and how we connect with each other online has become increasingly important. It is helping us stay in touch with each other.
To assist there is a range of relatively inexpensive equipment that can help people to contact loved ones using technology should they choose. Supported individuals in our group homes can use devices such as Wi-Fi enabled tablets, smart phones, iPads and laptops that are available from many technology provider retail stores, and you can shop at the store or online.
Individuals may wish to use one of their recent additional Social Security Payments of $750 each for technology purchases. We also note that in a recent update, the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) has announced that they are currently developing a new policy around low cost assistive technology items that could assist NDIS participants for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic. Further information will be provided shortly by the NDIA. We will let you know as we hear more. We will continue to provide updates as the entire community seeks to manage this pandemic together. Remember to check out our website regularly for the latest information.
Glenn Foard Hayley Dean
Chief Executive Officer Chief Outcome Officer
Previous CEO and COO COVID-19 (Coronavirus) updates: