News

COVID-19 information for our workforce

Reviewed: 28 May, 2020


Health Solutions Group Australia are closely monitoring the official Government sources and the World Health Organisation for the most up to date information and advice.
 
As we face the constantly changing circumstances related to COVID-19, we'd like to update you on protocols for our workforce.
 
Health Solutions Group Australia Mandatory Notification Protocol for On-hire Workforce, has been reviewed on the 28 May 2020 based on the Australian Department of Health Guidelines.

Health Solutions Group Australia national team includes:
  • Alliance Health
  • Alliance Community
  • ACT Nursing
  • Belmore Nurses
  • RNS Nursing
  • CQ Nurse
  • Heartbeat Nursing
 

Complete the government COVID-19 infection control training




Anyone diagnosed with COVID-19, or contacted by a Health Department/Public Health Unit and asked to self-isolate:
  • Must comply with medical & Health Department advice
  • Must advise their Manager/Supervisor IMMEDIATELY

Anyone who believes they have been in close contact (being face to face for at least 15-mins, or been in the same closed space for at least 2-hrs) with a confirmed COVID-19 positive person:
  • Must advise their Manager/Supervisor IMMEDIATELY
  • Must seek medical attention for consideration of testing for COVID-19
  • Must not attend work until cleared by a medical practitioner
If an employee suspects that they may be infected and are waiting on test results but cannot be isolated at home, they will need to contact the public health unit who will assess and advise on the next steps.

Anyone who is unwell and has flu-like* symptoms, whether having travelled internationally or not:
  • Must contact your Manager/Supervisor IMMEDIATELY
  • Must seek medical attention for consideration of testing for COVID-19
  • Provide a medical note for return to work
*flu-like symptoms: People with coronavirus may experience:
  • Fever
  • Flu like symptoms such as coughing, sore throat and fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
Reference: https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert/what-you-need-to-know-about-coronavirus-covid-19#symptoms
 
Australia’s borders are closed. Only Australian citizens, residents and immediate family members can travel to Australia. Anyone entering or returning to Australia:
  • Must observe the mandatory 14-day quarantine requirement at designated facilities as required by the Department of Home Affairs.  
  • Must contact their Recruitment Solutions Manager/Supervisor IMMEDIATELY

Staff who remain in the “high risk” countries and are unable to return
  • Must contact your Recruitment Solutions Manager/Supervisor IMMEDIATELY
  • Must observe the mandatory 14-day quarantine requirement on your return to Australia. 
 
Staff who have recently returned from interstate and meet current State Border closure restrictions: 
  • Must contact your Recruitment Solutions Manager/Supervisor IMMEDIATELY
  • Must observe the mandatory self-quarantine requirement in your home for 14-days from arrival in Australia, other than for seeking  individual medical care.
 
COVID-19 Border closures requiring mandatory self-isolation, have taken effect in several Australian states. However, Emergency and health workers, and essential workers may be considered exempt. Refer to the relevant state website for the most up-to-date information about entry conditions, forms and requirements of the state or territory you are travelling to

NSW: NSW Government Health: There are no current border controls in NSW.
SA:     SA Health: who has returned from interstate after 25/3/20 will have to isolate for 14 days (essential workers exempt)
VIC:  Victorian Health and Human Services:   There is no closure or restrictions on Victoria’s borders. Non-essential domestic travel is restricted and Victorians are being urged to stay at home where possible, but key services, like health, freight and logistics – including those that travel across state’s borders, will continue.
WA:   Western Australia Department of Health:  who has returned from interstate after 25/3/20 will have to isolate for 14 days (essential workers exempt)
ACT: ACT Government Health: There are currently no restrictions on cross-border movement between ACT and NSW, beyond those that apply to everyone (ie not undertaking non-essential travel, maintaining social distancing rules etc)
* QLD: QLD Government:  Entry into QLD is temporarily prohibited unless the travel is exempt. (health care workers may be considered exempt)
* NT: Northern Territory Government:  Non-essential travellers arriving at a Northern Territory border must complete 14 days of mandatory quarantine. Some essential services personnel, including health care workers, are exempt.

* Indigenous Communities: Government and Community Directions are in place to restrict the movement of people in and out of remote areas. Healthcare staff are required to meet the requirements of the specific local community risk assessment process and permit systems. Restrictions that apply in remote communities is available at:  Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships website.

Planned international travel:
On 24 March 2020, the Prime Minister announced a ban on Australians travelling overseas under the Biosecurity Act 2015. This will help prevent travellers returning to Australia with coronavirus.
There are limited exceptions, for example to allow people to return home if their normal place of residence is overseas. This process is managed by the Department of Home Affairs and the revised restrictions can be reviewed on their website. 
 
If you are currently travelling or planning to travel, you should check the warnings and alerts prior to departure as you might be subject to restrictions on return.
 
  • Must advise their Recruitment Solutions Manager/Supervisor of  intended travel and dates
 
Facility-based restrictions:
  • Certain health services/clients/host employers are implementing restrictions on staff based on the above criteria.
  • It is therefore essential that you contact us if you believe your circumstances are within the criteria above.
  • Aged Care Facilities must take extra precautions due to the vulnerability of their members. 
 
Planned international travel:
There are revised travel restrictions that are available via the Department of Home Affairs website.

Australian citizens and Australian permanent residents are restricted from travelling overseas from 25 March 2020. Some exemptions apply.

If you are currently travelling or planning to travel, you should check the warnings and alerts prior to departure as you might be subject to restrictions on return.
  • Must advise their Manager/Supervisor of their intended travel and dates  

Worker Screening:
New candidates will be asked to complete a survey prior to attending an interview, or a new assignment to confirm:
  • Any recent international or interstate travel and two week self-isolation details
  • Not experiencing flu-like symptoms
  • Any close contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19

Notification to Host Employers of On-hire Worker with Confirmed Case of COVID19
If an on hire staff member is confirmed as positive for COVID-19, the staff member must inform Health Solutions Group Australia as per compliance with this protocol.

Once informed, Health Solutions Group Australia will, under the direction of the Public Health Unit seek to facilitate notification to host employers/clients, as per their requirements.

Health Solutions Group Australia will seek the authority from the worker to release this information to at risk host workplaces / clients, as determined by risk assessment of diagnosis and work placement timelines, and as per the direction of the Public Health Unit or Health Department.

Whilst worker consent is also sought, Health Solutions Group Australia notes there is also an exception under the Privacy Act around disclosure without consent if we reasonably believe the use or disclosure is necessary to lessen or prevent a serious threat to the life, health or safety of any individual, or to public health or safety.

Keeping up to date:
Australia’s current situation is changing rapidly. You can keep up to date with these changes via the following:

 
Health Solutions Group Australia has an obligation to staff, clients, patients & participants to ensure the safety of all concerned and will continue to monitor and update guidelines and processes based on the health departments recommendations.

As your employer, we request that we are kept informed of any change in your status and your progress as per this notification protocol.

If you believe, your circumstances are within the criteria above or if you wish to speak to someone regarding your personal circumstances, please contact your Manager/ Supervisor IMMEDIATELY.
 
 

Helpful Links and Resources


Freqently Asked Questions

COVID-19  – Know the signs
https://www.health.gov.au/sites/default/files/documents/2020/03/coronavirus-covid-19-know-the-signs-coronavirus-covid-19-know-the-signs-poster_0.pdf
 
COVID-19 – Frequently asked questions
https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-frequently-asked-questions
 
Coronavirus (COVIS-19) isolation guidelines
https://www.health.gov.au/sites/default/files/documents/2020/03/coronavirus-covid-19-isolation-guidance_2.pdf
 
Coronavirus (COVID-19) information about home isolation when unwell (suspected or confirmed cases)
https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert/how-to-protect-yourself-and-others-from-coronavirus-covid-19/isolation-for-coronavirus-covid-19
 
Coronavirus (COVID-19) information about returning to your community
https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert/how-to-protect-yourself-and-others-from-coronavirus-covid-19/isolation-for-coronavirus-covid-19
 
Information for close contacts of a confirmed case  https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-close-contacts-of-a-confirmed-case
 
Physical Distancing Guidelines
https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert/how-to-protect-yourself-and-others-from-coronavirus-covid-19/physical-distancing-for-coronavirus-covid-19
 
Coronavirus (COVID-19) information for international travellers
https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-international-travellers
https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert/coronavirus-covid-19-advice-for-travellers
 
Coronavirus (COVID-19) information for health care and residential care workers:
https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-health-care-and-residential-care-workers
 
Personal protective equipment (PPE) for the health workforce during COVID-19:
https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert/coronavirus-covid-19-advice-for-the-health-and-aged-care-sector/personal-protective-equipment-ppe-for-the-health-workforce-during-covid-19
 
Coronavirus (COVID-19) information on the use of surgical masks
https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-information-on-the-use-of-surgical-masks
 
Coronavirus (COVID-19) guidelines for outbreaks in residential care facilities:
https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidelines-for-outbreaks-in-residential-care-facilities
 
Information on work attendance and testing for health and residential aged care workers:
https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-information-on-work-attendance-and-testing-for-health-and-residential-aged-care-workers

COVID-19 - How to protect yourself and the people you are caring for from infection.  Online training module
https://www.health.gov.au/news/how-to-protect-yourself-and-the-people-you-are-caring-for-from-infection-with-covid-19 


 
 

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