fbpx

Your version of Internet Explorer is not supported.

Please update your browser for more security, speed and the best experience on this site.

COVID-19 Testing Blitz – MERNDA

DPV Health is called in to lead a COVID testing blitz in Mernda.

With only hours’ notice, DPV Health has mobilised it resources to coordinate and manage a 21 day COVID testing site in the leafy streets of Mernda. As COVID cases continue to climb, the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) in partnership with the City of Whittlesea, have called on DPV Health to lead the testing project.

The large, four car marquee, that has been installed in the carpark of Waterview Recreation Reserve in Mernda, will be the home to about 24 clinical and administration staff for the next 21 days. DPV Health will manage the large team of dedicated staff (including 6 Australian Defence Force nurses) and the logistics of ensuring they have enough equipment, resources and support, to swab thousands of community members in a safe and efficient operation. It is anticipated that the blitz will test over 10,000 people during the 21 day drive through event.

Starting Saturday 11 July, the site will be operational 7 days a week between 9.30am – 4.30pm.

All local residents and people living or working in the hotspots are welcome to get tested, with or without symptoms. We also offer testing for children under 5 years old.

 

Mernda Drive-through Testing Location Map

Below: DPV Health’s Covid Warriors setting up the site and ready to defend our community’s health and help stop the spread.

Mernda testing site in media

Channel 9 News – Saturday 11th July

Channel 7 News – Wednesday 15th July

For more information on getting tested and location of DPV Health COVID testing sites click here.

 

What you need to know about keeping the elderly safe

You’ve probably heard in the news that the COVID-19 virus is particularly dangerous for older people. If you or a loved one is aged over 60 (or over 50 if you’re an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander), there are some things that you need to know.

Why is the virus dangerous for older people?

The risk of becoming seriously ill from COVID-19 increases with age. So far, we know that the highest rate of fatalities has been among older people, especially those who have existing medical conditions or a weakened immune system.

People with existing medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and lung conditions are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19. As many older Australians also have at least one of these conditions, their risk of becoming seriously ill is increased.

What about vaccines?

At the moment, there is no vaccination for COVID-19, however, older people should get their 2020 flu vaccination as soon as it becomes available. To arrange a Flu Vaccination call DPV Health Medical Centres on 1300 234 263. The Flu vaccination is free for seniors over the age of 65.

It’s also a good idea to talk to your doctor about whether you should have a pneumococcal vaccination against pneumonia. This vaccine is recommended for everyone over 65. You should also discuss whether a shingles vaccination is right for you.

I am an older person, what can I do?

Even if you are feeling well, it is important to take steps to prevent the spread of this virus. People over 70 now being asked to stay in home and not go out unless absolutely necessary.

Good hygiene and taking care when interacting with other people, are the best defences for you and your family against COVID-19. This includes:

  • covering your coughs and sneezes with your elbow or a tissue
  • disposing off used tissues immediately into a waste bin and washing your hands
  • washing your hands often with soap and water, including before and after eating and after going to the toilet, and when you have been out to shops or other places
  • using alcohol-based hand sanitisers, where available
  • cleaning and disinfecting surfaces that are frequently touched
  • staying 1.5 metres away — 2 arms’ length — from other people. This is an example of social distancing
  • if you are sick, stay at home and avoid contact with others
  • avoiding non-essential travel
  • consider having the chemist deliver your medicines
  • think about having your groceries delivered

Should I visit my elderly relatives?

This is a tricky question, and you need to use your best judgement. It is important to avoid exposing elderly people to any visits including from relatives unless absolutely necessary. If your elderly relatives are in a residential aged care facility, there will be some restrictions.

The Australian Government has announced visitor restrictions across all aged care facilities for people who have recently returned from overseas or have been in contact with someone with COVID-19. Some aged care providers are asking that people do not visit their centres as it puts their residents at further risk. Exceptions may be made if your loved one is ill or in a palliative stage.

Some people are strictly restricted from visiting a residential aged care facility:

  • Visitors who have returned from overseas in the last 14 days
  • Visitors who have been in contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19 in the last 14 days
  • Visitors with a fever or symptoms of a respiratory illness
  • Children 16 years and under, except in special circumstances

What can we do?

Make sure that you regularly call and check in on your older relatives. You can help them out by making a short trip to the supermarket or pharmacy for them as they may not be able to go on their own. Helping them stay connected with others through phone calls or video call systems can help them feel less isolated.

If you’re an older person and are struggling with stress or anxiety around the COVID-19 pandemic, reach out to family, friends and medical professionals for support. Be sure to tell people if you are having difficulties getting food or medication. Also try to take a break from watching, reading or listening to the news, as this can be upsetting if you don’t take a break from it.

Telehealth

If you need to make a medical or health care appointment you can now do so during self isolation via our Telehealth, Video & Phone Appointment services. For more information call: 1300 234 263 or visit: https://www.dpvhealth.org.au/all-services/telehealth/

Useful Resources

  • DPV Health (Counselling, Social work & Psychology team) – Call: 1300 234 263 if you would like an appointment (8:30 am to 5 pm Monday to Friday) Telephone counselling is available.
  • DPV Health Medical Centre – Call: 1300 234 263 (Telehealth services now available)
  • Government Emergency Relief Packages: Supporting people in mandatory self-isolation, who have little or no food, and no network of family and friends to support them. Each eligible household will receive a two-week supply of essential goods. Call: 1800 675 398.
  • Prescription Medicine Home Delivery Services:

www.amcal.com.au

www.tonicapp.com.au/

www.mymedkit.com.au

For more information on Coronavirus (COVID-19) call the hotline on 1800 675 398 or visit DPV Health updates page on: https://www.dpvhealth.org.au/coronavirus-covid-19/

 

Do you know someone that feels isolated and needs  a phone friend?

Staying connected  to community with a friendly person to chat to during this isolation time is more important than ever.

Our volunteer lead service, Hume Community Register have been making phone calls to isolated people living on their own for over 10 years.

This FREE community service is run by experienced and friendly volunteers who know the importance that a phone call can make to the health and well being of an isolated person.

Next time you need a friendly chat our  volunteers are just a phone call away.

Call our team on 8301 8836. 

What you need to know about self isolation

 

There’s been a lot of talk in the media lately about self-isolation and the coronavirus, but what does this term actually mean for you and your family?

Who needs to self-isolate?

From midnight March 15th 2020, the Australian Government has ordered that people who have been in close contact with a confirmed case of coronavirus (as well as those returning from overseas) should self-isolate in either their own homes or hotel rooms. This self-isolation should last for 14 days, which is the amount of time it usually takes for symptoms of the coronavirus to appear.

What does self-isolation really mean?

Self-isolation means that you must stay in one residence and not go to public places such as work, school, childcare, university or public gatherings. Only the people who usually live with you at home should be allowed in the house. Avoid inviting or entertaining visitors to your home and if you are in a hotel, try to avoid having contact with staff or guests.

Going outside

The Department of Health has indicated that if you live in a private house, then it is safe for you to spend time in your garden or courtyard. If you live in an apartment block, or are staying in a hotel, it is okay to go into the garden, but you should wear a surgical mask, and try to move through shared public areas as quickly as possible.

How do I manage 14 days of isolation?

Being in isolation can be stressful, upsetting and boring. Try to remember that you will only need to self-isolate for 14 days and it is for the good of the whole community. Perhaps the best way to think about self-isolation is that it doesn’t mean that you can’t communicate with other people. In fact, staying in (non-physical) contact with people is important. Here are some suggestions:

  • Talk to others on the phone, email or social media
  • Try to develop some daily routines – especially around eating and exercise
  • Do things that help you to relax
  • Talk to school age children about the situation in terms that they can understand
  • Use the 14 days as an opportunity to do activities that you don’t usually have time for

Is self-isolation the same as social distancing (now referred to as physical distancing)?

No. These are different things. While self-isolation requires you to stay home, social distancing simply means not getting too close to other people when you are going about your daily activities. For example, if you do not need to self-isolate at home, you may go to school, university or work, however you need to reduce the spread of germs. This can be done by:

  • Stop handshaking as a greeting
  • Hold meetings over the phone or as a video conference
  • Put off large meetings that need everyone in the room
  • Try to stay at least 1.5 meters from other people
  • Wash your hands with soap, and use hand sanitiser as much as possible.

Your Mental Health

While physical distancing and self-isolation can help protect our physical health, we also need to consider our mental health.

Feelings such as boredom, frustration, anxiety and even post-traumatic stress disorder can all be triggered by this sudden and widespread change in our environment.

To help support the mental health and well-being of our community, dpv health’s counselling, psychology and social work team will be making phone based therapy sessions available during this difficult time.

Should you or your family need personal support and wish to speak with a counsellor, please call 1300 234 263 to arrange a phone based appointment.

DPV Health

DPV Health to remedy developmental disadvantage with School Readiness Program

DPV Health successful in securing $1.2 Million to improve pre-school learning and reduce developmental disadvantage for children in Hume.

The Victorian Government Department of Education and Training has funded DPV Health $1.2 million to provide allied health and early intervention services to local pre-school children.

One in five Victorian children start school developmentally vulnerable. The impact of this can result in significant health and well-being issues that last a lifetime. The ‘School Readiness Funding Program’ will support a team consisting of DPV Health speech pathologists, child psychologists and occupational therapists to provide services to educators, families and their children within priority kindergartens across Hume.

Intended to make quality healthcare accessible to children who need it, full-time health professionals will deliver more than 300 sessions in designated kindergartens across Northern Melbourne.

CEO Don Tidbury is delighted to see DPV Health make positive and wide-reaching change for better health and well-being outcomes for children in our community. “I’m very proud that the expertise of DPV Health’s early childhood allied health service has been recognised in such a significant way. We are the first community health service awarded to deliver this Program in Northern Melbourne” he said. “The Program will make an enormous difference to the lives of many children and families, serving DPV Health’s Vision to ensure the health and well-being of our community.”

As well as helping children in priority health outcome areas including communication (language development) and wellbeing (social and emotional), the Program can also connect children and families with other appropriate supports within their local community to optimise learning opportunities.

These services are urgently needed in our community, with the Hume region experiencing high rates of children who are developmentally vulnerable according to Australian Early Development Centre data 2018.

For more information about DPV Health’s School Readiness Program, please contact Melinda Thompson, Program Manager – Child, Youth and Family on (03) 8301 6200.
COVID-19 Lockdown Update

All DPV Health sites will remain open for emergency and medical treatments, however, some services will be affected.

Clients with existing appointments will be contacted to reschedule or convert their appointment to Telehealth.

Please call 1300 234 263 for more information.

For mental health support during these difficult times, our Head to Help service is available on 1800 595 212.

If you have an appointment with DPV Health, please click below to check the current COVID-19 exposure sites prior to attending.