Coronavirus Update

Good afternoon all,

Please find the following information providing staff with an update on the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cross-Border (Victoria) Permits

The Victorian Government has announced that from 6pm on Friday 13 August, border region residents will require a permit to cross between Victoria and NSW.

The only permissible reasons for entering Victoria, include:

  • Necessary goods and services
  • Care and compassion
  • Work
  • Education
  • Receiving a COVID-19 vaccination
  • Sport and exercise

Residents will be able to apply for a permit from Thursday afternoon on 12 August, at or the Services Vic App.

Covid-19 Vaccination Clinics

  1. Pop Up Vaccination Clinic – 16 to 20 August

Live Better has extended an invitation to local people with a disability and direct support workers from any disability service provider to attend their pop up vaccination clinic. The attached flier contains details of the clinic and a QR code to book in.

  1. Mercy Connect St Johns Vaccination Clinic – date to be confirmed

Aspen Medical will revisit Mercy Connect to administer the Pfizer vaccine on site. Dates and times to be confirmed and staff will be advised when this happens.

Face Masks
Face masks are compulsory in all homes / indoor non-residential settings. Face masks are to be worn by staff, family / guardians, visitors and participants. You may use a single-use mask continuously for up to 4 hours, as long as it does not become moist, soiled or damaged. Do not store and reuse single-use masks. There are some exceptions for not wearing face masks or shields. Staff should consult with Team Leaders / Managers if you have a medical reason for not wearing face masks. If a participant becomes unsettled with wearing a mask, staff should speak with Team Leaders to seek the appropriate cause of action.

Tips on wearing masks

  • Wash or sanitise your hands before putting on or taking off your mask.
  • Ensure the mask covers your nose and mouth and fits snugly under your chin, over the bridge of your nose and against the sides of your face.
  • Refrain from touching the front of your mask while wearing or removing it.
  • Do not allow the mask to hang around your neck or under your nose.
  • Do not reuse single-use masks.
  • Wash and dry reusable masks after use and store in a clean, dry place

For further information on face masks visit

Visitors to Mercy Connect
Homes / Comunity Inclusion
In line with the advice that has been received from the Chief Medical Officer for residential disability care providers and home care service providers on the NSW Health Disability Support Providers webpage at Only two visitors per resident should be allowed each day.  Wherever possible, visits should be spaced to minimise the number of visitors in the residence at the same time. All visitors must complete the COVID19 Questionnaire / Declaration prior to visiting the residence. Visitors are expected to wear facemasks and adhere to social distancing.

Visitors to Mercy Connect facilities will be limited to essential only and must complete the COVID19 Questionnaire / Declaration prior to visiting the residence and check-in using the QR system. A reminder that all external visitors/contractors must be approved by the CEO Office, or my office. A COVID-19 Declaration / Questionnaire form (attach form)  must be completed prior to the visit and returned to

All staff, family, guardians and visitors are required to check-in using the QR Code system.

Staff are encouraged to undertake meetings via Microsoft Teams during this period. If face to face meetings are required, please adhere to the current restrictions of people in each room.

Personal Hygiene
These simple steps can help to protect yourself and the community.

  • Clean your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing and sneezing or use your elbow, not your hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people unwell with cold or flu-like symptoms, and stay home if you have symptoms.
  • Avoid touching your face and avoid shaking hands with others.
  • Try to maintain a distance of 1.5 metres from others and avoid crowded places.

Remember, when washing your hands, all you need is water and soap, body wash or shampoo. It doesn’t need to be expensive, or ‘antibacterial’. The key to handwashing is to wash often and wash well, for at least 20 seconds.

Household Hygiene
As well as regular handwashing, cleaning and disinfecting surfaces in the homes can help stop the spread of COVID-19. Regularly clean these surfaces with a household detergent, followed by disinfectant. You can also use detergent and disinfectant wipes as long as you scrub the surface hard. Following is a list of frequently touched surfaces that should be cleaned:

  • doorknobs
  • handles
  • light switches
  • phones
  • tablets
  • touch screens
  • tables
  • hard-backed chairs
  • remote controls
  • keyboards
  • desks
  • toilets
  • sinks and basins
  • car steering wheel
  • car seats.

Please note that this current COVID-19 outbreak is an evolving situation, and further restrictions may be put into place without prior consultation or warning, subject to government advice or alerts. If you do have COVID-19 symptomsget tested and stay at home.

Together we grow.

Trent Dean
Chief Executive Officer