COVID-19 information for aged care and community care providers

WA Health is committed to ensuring that our partner organisations and other affiliates in Aged Care and Community Care are well supported to deal with COVID-19.

We are especially keen to ensure vulnerable persons, who we know are more vulnerable to the virus, are able to receive the ongoing safe and high quality care they need.

Aged Care Providers include Government and private agencies who provide care to older persons. Community Care Providers include organisations and staff who work to provide care outside of the hospital setting and in the community, including home care and non-clinical care.

Aged care

The COVID-19 RACF Guidelines for resident transfer to and from hospital (PDF 166KB) have been developed by the Department of Health Western Australia (WA) to support Health Service Providers (HSP) and residential aged care facilities (RACF) in relation to transfer of residents to and from hospital during the WA COVID-19 pandemic response.

Supporting information for the management of Acute Respiratory Infection (including COVID-19 and Influenza)

The Supporting information for the management of Acute Respiratory Infection (ARI) (PDF 197KB), including COVID-19 and Influenza, in RACFs has been developed by the Department of Health Western Australia. It is designed to be read alongside other resources including the Winter Plan – A guide for residential aged care providers. The document provides advice on ARIs and outbreaks, testing of residents and staff with ARIs, management of cases and contacts, infection, prevention and control measures, priorities in managing an acute ARI outbreak, and notification and reporting for acute ARIs.

Workers at Residential Aged Care Facilities Directions

Visitors to Residential Aged Care Facilities Directions

Aged care infection prevention and control resources

The Infection Prevention and Control Guidelines for Western Australian Residential Care Facilities (PDF 1.4MB) has been prepared to support residential care facility Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) Leads and outlines key IPC responsibilities.

Hand hygiene

Hand hygiene means thoroughly cleaning your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub (hand sanitiser). Correct hand hygiene reduces the spread of germs and is essential in reducing the risk of transmission of COVID-19.

It is important to know when to perform hand hygiene. The 5 moments for hand hygiene poster (external site) provides a useful reminder and can be placed around the workplace.

It’s also important to know how to wash and cleanse your hands properly. The How to wash your hands poster (PDF 348KB), shows how to wash hands with soap and water and with hand sanitiser, and can be placed above hand wash stations and where hand sanitiser is located.

How to don (put on) and doff (remove) PPE

All staff members must be trained in the correct use of PPE. This includes identification and correct donning and doffing sequences. The correct sequence is outlined in the PPE: Donning and doffing in healthcare settings poster (PDF 1.6MB).

You may also wish to view this brief Donning and doffing PPE video (external site).

To support training undertaken in your facility, download the PPE: Don & doff in healthcare setting competency checklist (PDF 168KB).

Donning and doffing stations

Donning and doffing stations should be easily accessible but located in completely separate, designated and distanced zones.

See Donning and doffing station examples (PDF 411KB) for pictures of donning and doffing stations.

Infection prevention and control for designated zones

In the event of a probably or confirmed case of COVID-19, your service should be divided into zones to limit the risk of transmission.

Follow the infection prevention and control advice on the necessary precautions before entering a COVID-19 designated zone and what PPE changes are necessary between resident rooms. This is dependent on the procedure undertaken, level of contact with the resident and what PPE may be or is contaminated.

This advice can be found in the Designated Zoning Posters for Residential Aged Care Facilities (PDF 1.9MB).

It should be noted that in the event of an outbreak, significant efforts and resources will apply to designated zones including the creation of staffing and resident cohorts. Additional IP&C strategies will need to be strictly followed.

Download the Stop – No entry beyond this point (PDF 178KB) and Stop – Authorised access only (PDF 179KB) posters.

Last reviewed: 09-09-2022