17 Mar CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)
The following information is provided for the broader METS community of families, carers and visitors. We are here to support you during this time and to work together to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in the community.
METS receives regular disability provider-specific updates from the Australian and NSW health departments which are updated to this website as new information becomes available.
NSW Health continues to provide specific updates regarding the restrictions on residential disability facilities.
The current measures in place for METS Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA)/Supported Independent Living (SIL) sites are detailed below.
- Face masks are no longer required at METS sites, including when providing direct support to participants. This comes into effect immediately, and includes visitors, employees and participants. It is still recommended that face masks are worn on public transport and when unable to maintain 1.5m social distancing.
- Participants at our SIL sites are no longer restricted to five visitors per day. However, a number of NSW community restrictions remain in place and are applicable at METS houses, including restrictions on total number of daily visitors to homes. View www.nsw.gov.au/COVID-19 to check the latest information.
- Standard COVID-19 screening questions and temperature checks are still required for participants/employees/visitors entering any METS site.
- For participants leaving the site, standard METS COVID-19 screening questions and temperature checks are completed on their return.
- If you have attended any of the case locations in Australia or New Zealand during the times listed at www.nsw.gov.au/COVID-19/latest-news-and-updates you will be excluded from entering the site.
Vaccination rollout for people with disability and frontline workers
METS is currently investigating the Commonwealth Government’s announcement that certain disability workers and participants living in SIL houses will be included in the initial phase of the COVID-19 Vaccine rollout.
The vaccination program is an important step in safeguarding our participants and people and reducing the impact of COVID-19 on the community.
At this stage, METS has not received any dates or information about the rollout plan at METS sites and the specifics of who will be eligible. We expect to know more in the coming days and weeks and will work closely with the relevant health agencies to enact the plan.
Once we have more information and understand how this applies to METS we will be in touch with participants and their decision-makers.
A number of Australian Government resources are available to support participants and carers during the rollout:
COVID-19 precautions and protocols are in place across all our services and sites, to help keep our participants, their friends and families, our employees and the communities we work in safe.
The measures include:
- Site access measures (temperature checking, visitor registers and illness/travel history questioning) and strict additional hygiene and cleaning.
- The wearing of face masks is encouraged where social distancing is not possible. Sites have sufficient supplies of face masks on hand.
- Infection Control Leads ensure enhanced cleaning and hygiene measures are in place at all sites.
- Updated site access controls and visitor guidelines
- Additional training and support for our staff
- Each METS site has a nominated Infection Control Lead, responsible for ensuring all infection control measures are being followed. They monitor compliance with DSA policies, protocols and NSW Health directives in supporting team members, participants and visitors at our sites to be COVID safe.
Our on-site measures are amended based on health advice and we have developed procedures to enact should we have a close exposure or confirmed diagnosis of infection at a site.
These are important measures that can help protect our participants and employees as well as reduce the spread of COVID-19 in the community.
We all play a role in keeping ourselves, our families, participants and communities safe.
It is important we continue to work together to ensure all METS locations remain COVID safe environments for our participants, team members and community.
All METS employees continue to be on alert and it is essential that we are vigilant in monitoring for symptoms.
Our focus and priority remains the health, safety and wellbeing of our participants and employees. It is vital we all continue closely monitoring the circumstances and what they mean for our community.
Additional training and support for staff
Our COVID Response Team meets regularly to consider the current Health advice and the impact on our services and ensure the best response to keep people safe and infection free.
METS has a suite of COVID-19 specific training for staff including the Department of Health’s Infection Control module.
Getting in touch
Please call your key contact person if you have any questions or concerns. Alternatively you can call our Connections team on 02 9838 0567.