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The Australian and Victorian governments are working together to improve how they respond to, and manage, coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreaks in disability residential care.
To do this, they are focussing on supporting staff and services to limit the number of places a staff member can work, as well as improving how they manage outbreaks through a new Disability Response Centre.
They know that people with disability, their families and support workers are worried about coronavirus, particularly for people living in residential care and group homes. There are currently 62 active cases in disability residential services. Forty-nine of these cases are staff members.
Staff that work across a number of different sites pose a huge risk to the virus spreading in residential services. The government is working to reduce the movement of staff between residences, while also making sure that staff are still getting enough income.
The government has set up a $15 million scheme to support disability service providers to have a ‘one worker-two sites’ cap. The Worker Mobility Reduction Payment scheme will cover any lost hours of work for staff and the cost of hiring extra workers. The scheme will run until December 2020.
The new Disability Response Centre will include representatives from the National Disability Insurance Agency, NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission, Commonwealth Department of Social Services and the Victorian Department of Health and Services.
You can read more in a press release on the Premier of Victoria’s website.