Coronavirus Advice - Royal Institute for Deaf & Blind Children

Coronavirus Advice

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Image of a child receiving therapy remotely with the words we continue to deliver services to our clients during COVID-19

Updated 14 July 2020 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to impact our community, as we are seeing with the developing situation in Victoria. 

As an organisation, we continue to make decisions in accordance with State and Federal Government advice. Our number one concern is the wellbeing and safety of our staff, clients, and the broader community. 

Importantly, we continue to deliver services to the people who need us – our clients, be that online using the phone or telepractice, or in-person with extra infection control and health measures in place. 

If you wish to get in touch with us, you can contact our Client Care team via: 

Updated 20 May 2020 

As COVID-19 restrictions ease, we aim to keep you safe.

Stage one of the Federal Cabinet plan to lift COVID-19 restrictions has started and, as we follow the advice of the experts, you can expect to see and experience a few changes at RIDBC centres.

These changes are to keep you and our people safe. We’ve continued to support our communities during the COVID-19 crisis, we’ve just been doing it differently — online, room-to-room, with extra infection control and health measures in place.

Now, as we start to slowly transition our services back to being delivered more in-centre where possible, we are introducing additional safety measures.

What staying safe means

Staying safe means adhering to the advice of state government where you live as restrictions are eased. To stay safe, we all need to maintain good hand washing and sneeze hygiene and stay at home if we feel unwell — to minimise transmission of COVID-19. This flyer, Staying Safe, outlines what you can expect when you visit an RIDBC centre.

At RIDBC we adapted quickly to the COVID-19 crisis, and while we have been delivering services remotely or via telepractice, we have continued to support our clients to achieve their goals, including supporting Emily to continue accessing Early Intervention therapy. Our hope is that as we move forward and come to the other side of this pandemic, our clients will benefit by having more choice for the way they receive services.

We look forward to continuing to support our clients as we transition to the new normal.

Updated 24 April 2020 

The way we provide services to our clients may be different during the time of COVID-19 but the way our clients and staff see it, it hasn’t changed our commitment to redefining what’s possible for people with hearing loss or vision impairment. 

This is how we have adapted during the COVID-19 crisis and what it looks like.

Updated 9 April 2020 

As we head into the Easter break, we would like to extend a sincere thank you to our clients for your patience and understanding as we have changed the way we support you during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.  

Our number one concern is the wellbeing and safety of our staff, clients and the broader community which is why we have needed to introduce physical distancing measures in line with Federal and State government advice. But that hasn’t stopped our ongoing commitment to providing our world class RIDBC services for those who need us. 

Our 25 March update is still current:  

  • RIDBC services continue. Our team has worked hard to ensure clients can continue to receive our support, including over the phone and via telepractice (online delivery of service). We’ve contacted those clients impacted by these changes. 
  • We have ceased all in-person services, except for a small number of clients considered on a case by case basis, as well as RIDBC schools and preschools in NSW.  

The above changes will be in place until Friday 26 June unless the COVID-19 situation changes.  

We recognise this is a challenging time for families and as we approach the Easter break we’d like to reinforce a message – please look after yourself and those closest to you. We’re committed to keeping you informed as the situation regarding COVID-19 evolves. 

If you wish to get in touch with us, you can contact our Client Care team via: 

 

Updated 25 March 2020

RIDBC services are continuing.

Our team is working hard to ensure our clients can continue to receive our support, including over the phone and via telepractice (online delivery of service).

We are ceasing all in-person services, with the exception of RIDBC schools and preschools in NSW.

As the situation regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to change, RIDBC is committed to keeping you informed.

Our number one concern is the wellbeing and safety of our staff, clients and the broader community. We are aligning our decision making and approach with Government recommendations around social distancing.

So, following on from the latest social distancing measures announced by the Prime Minister, we are taking the following steps:

  1. Our schools and preschools in NSW will remain open but in line with Government recommendations, we encourage children to stay at home where possible.
  2. RIDBC will cease all other in-person service delivery to clients at our sites, except for a small number of clients who will be considered on a case by case basis. All clients with upcoming appointments will be contacted this week, to make alternative arrangements that meet your needs.
  3. We are exploring all avenues to ensure our clients can continue to receive our support, including over the phone and via telepractice. These arrangements will be in place until the Easter break (Tuesday 14 April 2020) and will be assessed to determine the way forward after Easter.

Please look after yourself and those closest to you.

If you wish to get in touch with us, you can contact our Client Care team via:

Phone: 1300 581 391
Email: info@ridbc.org.au

Updated 20 March 2020

As the situation regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Australia and around the world continues to rapidly evolve, RIDBC is committed to keeping you informed.  

The wellbeing and safety of our clients, staff and the broader community is our highest priority. 

RIDBC continues to operate all our sites around Australia, implementing extra safeguards in place to minimise the spread of this virus.  

We are here to support our clients to access our services but unfortunately COVID-19 is having an impact. At this moment, a small number of our services have been impacted, as the Government recommended guidelines tighten. 

What’s changed as a result of COVID-19? 

For the safety of RIDBC people, our clients and stakeholders:

  • A small number of RIDBC’s services that are conducted outside of our centres have been suspended during this time, any client directly impacted will be contacted 
  • Services provided within local school and pre-school environments continues in each of the schools and preschools that are allowing visiting staff
  • We’ve moved to delivering many of our professional education programs online; and
  • We’ve significantly reduced the number of non-essential people visiting our sites and services

While our sites remain open and operational, we’re exercising additional hygiene and screening measures to ensure everyone’s safety. We are doing all we can to make sure we contribute to reducing the spread of COVID-19. 

Our focus remains to support our clients, the broader community and each other. Now and always. We are working hard to explore alternate methods of service delivery if things worsen and we are reviewing the situation daily. 

Detailed information about COVID-19, who is at risk, travel restrictions and increased hygiene measures can be found on the Commonwealth Department of Health, which can be found by clicking here.

We understand that these are uncertain times for many people. We will continue to monitor developments closely and communicate with you on a regular basis. 

If you wish to get in touch with us with questions or further suggestions, you can contact our Client Care team via: 

Phone: 1300 581 391
Email: info@ridbc.org.au

 

Updated 16 March 2020

As the situation regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Australia and around the world continues to rapidly evolve, RIDBC is closely monitoring the advice of the Commonwealth Department of Health as well as introducing new measures that first and foremost focus on the wellbeing of our clients, broader community and our staff.

As well as supporting you to stay well and safe, we are committed to keeping you informed about any updates on our approach, service changes or disruptions.

Our response to COVID-19 will continue to evolve as required.

What you need to know

As of today, most of our services continue to operate as normal. If your service is directly impacted by measures introduced due to COVID-19, we will be in contact with you directly. We have however introduced additional precautionary measures in line with Government recommendations.

  1. Border control measures from the Federal Government came into effect today (16 March 2020) in response to the spread of the coronavirus in Australia. This means that from today anyone arriving in Australia from overseas must self-isolate for 14 days.
  2. If this applies to you, you cannot attend school, an appointment or meeting at any RIDBC location for 14 days after your return to Australia. You can also not attend school, an appointment or meeting at any RIDBC location for 14 days if you have been in close contact with someone who is a confirmed case of COVID-19.
  3. RIDBD strongly recommends that you reconsider attending school, an appointment or meeting at any RIDBC locationif you have any cold and/or flu symptoms. We recommend you access your local health professional or HealthDirect (1800 022 222 or https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/) for advice.

In addition, to ensure the safety of clients and staff, all people arriving at an RIDBC site will be asked to confirm whether they have arrived from overseas,or have been in close contact with a confirmed case.

Detailed information about COVID-19, who is at risk, travel restrictions and increased hygiene measures can be found on the Commonwealth Department of Health, which can be found by clicking here.

We understand that these are uncertain times for many people. We will continue to monitor developments closely and communicate with you on a regular basis.

If you wish to get in touch with us with further suggestions, you can contact our Client Care team via:

Phone: 1300 581 391
Email: info@ridbc.org.au

Thank you for your support with this matter.

Updated 6 March 2020

In response to the rapidly evolving status of the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) RIDBC is developing a comprehensive plan should the spread of COVID-19 become more widespread.

RIDBC Chief Executive Chris Rehn says he is confident in RIDBC’s ability to respond effectively and efficiently if the situation develops further.

As of today (6 March 2020), the Department of Health has indicated there are 52 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Australia. The priority at RIDBC is to prevent transmission of the virus and to support our staff and clients to be informed but not worried.

At the time of publication, the Government has advised that there was no evidence of widespread community transmission and that we should all continue to go about our daily lives as normal. RIDBC continues to operate all its sites and services.

Please read and follow the advice from the Commonwealth Department of Health regarding the COVID-19. This advice can be found by clicking here.

In line with this advice, if you or your children/dependents are directed to self-isolate, please do not attend your appointment, school or program during this time. We would encourage you to call or email us to discuss your options and ensure continuity of your service in other ways where possible.

Detailed information about COVID-19, who is at risk, travel restrictions and increased hygiene measures can be found on the Commonwealth Department of Health, which can be found by clicking here.

Updated 29 January 2020

You will no doubt have heard news about the outbreak of the Coronavirus in China, including current reports of five confirmed cases in Australia. Most reported cases have been people who have been in Wuhan, China.

RIDBC encourages our clients and staff to read and follow the advice from the Commonwealth Department of Health regarding the Coronavirus. This advice can be found by clicking on the Department of Health link here.

If required, State based Health Departments also have comprehensive information available on their websites.

  • New South Wales, Department of Health link here.
  • Australian Capital Territory, Department of Health link here.
  • Victoria, Health and Human Services link here.
  • Queensland, Department of Health link here.
  • Northern Territory, Department of Health link here.

At the current time, it is very unlikely that a person could develop the Coronavirus infection unless they have travelled to an affected area in China in the 14 days before they have become unwell.

In line with Government recommendations, we are requesting if you, or your children/dependents have visited China in the last two weeks do not attend your appointment, school or program until 14 days have lapsed since you departed China.

If you need to cancel an RIDBC appointment, or will not be attending school or a program, please notify the appropriate service.

RIDBC is monitoring developments closely. Thank you for your support with this matter.

 

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