For Support Workers

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Supporting People to Stay Infection Free

If you are considering employment or seeking information about the role of a Support Worker please contact the Cam Can office on 9316 1624

 

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Information for support workers

  • People who have returned from anywhere overseas, or have been in close contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19, must self-isolate for 14 days.
  • If you develop symptoms, including a fever and cough, immediately and urgently seek medical attention.
  • This information sheet should be read in conjunction with the ‘What you need to know’ and ‘Isolation guidance’ information sheets on the Australian Government Department of Health website.

Can I go to work?

Like others, people working in the disability services sector need to stay at home for 14 days after returning from overseas or being in close contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19. Employees who are in isolation cannot go to work and should alert their employer.

Disability support workers should not attend work if they have a fever, or symptoms of a respiratory illness.

Employees should advise their employer if they develop symptoms during the isolation period, particularly if they have been in the workplace or in contact with a client.

Should disability support workers wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?

If you are working with people with disability, continue to practise good hygiene – wearing gloves where required, washing your hands frequently and so on.

There is no need for disability or health workers to wear surgical masks unless you are working directly with people who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19. Further guidance on the use of surgical masks is on the Department of Health website.

The Department of Health has a stock of PPE that they will be managing through the National Medical Stockpile. This protective equipment will be provided from the Stockpile according to need. Cam Can has requested stock for use with our members.

Working with Cam Can members during COVID-19 Social Distancing.

As a response to COVID-19 and the resulting social distancing that has been recommended, the NDIS has agreed to make funding more flexible for Cam Can members. Some of the areas that may directly affect support workers include:

  • The broadening of the definition of ‘short term cancellation’. This may lead to support workers being given a greater notice period if work is cancelled. In the instance that cancellations are at short notice, the support worker will continue to be paid for their scheduled hours during the cancellation period.
  • The NDIS is encouraging providers to be flexible in the way that they provide essential support so that Cam Can members can remain safe and have adequate supports. This may mean that Cam Can members could request some different tasks for you as part of your support role. For e.g. you may be asked to visit the pharmacy to ensure an adequate supply of medication, or doing some grocery shopping for members who are self-isolating or do not wish to leave their own home at this time.
  • Greater flexibility may lead to a different type of delivery of support for members. Some members may choose to stay connected to their support workers through the use of technology at times. The NDIS have stated that technology can be used where appropriate and when agreed to by a Cam Can member. Any requests for support of this nature should be discussed with your Service Coordinator

 

Centrelink Assistance

Some members may choose to cancel all supports and services at this time as they wish to self-isolate to reduce the risk of contracting COVID-19. If this does occur and support workers find that they have lost some hours of employment due to the effect of COVID-19 on their employment, there is immediate relief available through Centrelink.

For more information visit-

https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/jobseeker-payment

Workers’ compensation – Coronavirus (COVID-19)

In order for any worker to be eligible for compensation a disease must have been contracted in the course of employment and the employment must have been a significant contributing factor to the contraction of the disease.

In relation to COVID-19 where exposure can occur in public settings questions may arise as to the exact time and place of contracting the virus. As a result, it may be difficult to determine that employment was a significant contributing factor.

Each claim would need to be considered on its individual merits, having regard to the individual circumstances and evidence of each claim.

 

What can you do to help prevent the spread of coronavirus and help keep yourself and members stay healthy?

  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water. This includes when first entering a member’s home, before preparing food, before eating, before and after providing personal care, after sneezing and coughing.
  • If you are unable to wash your hands, use hand sanitiser.
  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow.
  • Avoid shaking hands with people.
  • Follow Australian Health Department protocols.