Visitor restrictions tighten in Ballarat aged care as COVID-19 re-emerges

CARE: Visitor restrictions have tightened on all nine Ballarat Health Services' aged care facilities, including Bill Crawford Lodge.
CARE: Visitor restrictions have tightened on all nine Ballarat Health Services' aged care facilities, including Bill Crawford Lodge.

Visitor restrictions to Ballarat Health Services' aged care facilities have tightened in response to the coronavirus outbreak in Melbourne.

Residents in Ballarat Aged Care homes are once again limited to one visitor for one session, a maximum of 60 minutes, each day. Visits must be pre-booked.

This comes after eased Christmas visitation across BHS and private aged care facilities in Ballarat allowing family group meets.

New restrictions came into effect from New Year's Day, coinciding with Victoria's full border closures to New South Wales.

Families and friends are urged to coordinate their visits. Anyone making a visit must wear supplied personal protective equipment and have written proof of having had the flu vaccination.

Visitation restrictions have been a dynamic situation at BHS facilities throughout the pandemic. BHS has maintained a conservative approach on Victorian health department guidelines.

Victoria recorded three new cases of locally transmitted COVID-19 on Wednesday, taking the state's tally to 38 active infections. At least 24 cases have been connected to a Melbourne bayside Thai restaurant and linked to a Sydney outbreak.

More than 1000 primary and secondary contacts are isolating and a growing number of exposure sites have been identified.

UFS primary care operations manager Danielle Trezise told The Courier on Tuesday testing was near capacity at its Errard Street COVID-19 screening clinic and the BHS-led clinic in Little Bridge Street until late into this week.

Space is kept for anyone with symptoms - including cough, cold, flu or hayfever - to be tested.

Visits to patients and residents in other BHS facilities also remain limited but restrictions allow for two people per visit, with only one visit per patient each day.

BHS is taking extra precautions with any patients or residents arriving from time spent in Melbourne suburbs Mitcham, Hallam or Mentone this festive season.

More details on BHS visitation here.

This story Visitor restrictions tighten in aged care as COVID-19 re-emerges first appeared on The Courier.