COVID-19

Information about coronavirus (COVID-19)*

Disclaimer

  *This page will continue to be updated as new information is available.  Last update Tuesday 27 October, 12:45pm  (AEDT)
   - please note the updates relate primarily to information for Victoria (see below) 

 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) has been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organisation.  

The Department of Health (Australia) is monitoring the outbreak of COVID-19.  You are encouraged to stay up to date with information on their website, or via Facebook.  At the bottom of this page is a long list is resources available.

 

Specific resources available for Allied Health Professionals:

  • PPE video for allied health workers - link here
  • Webinar series for primary care and allied health practitioners - link here
  • Distribution of PPE for general practice, community pharmacy and allied health professionals - link here
  • Allied Health checklist for receptionists - link here
  • Allied health poster - 'now open for clients' - link here
  • Alled health poster - 'practice now open' - link here

Resources developed for health professionals which are also intended to support allied health professionals:

 

Continuing to Practice

Victoria Only

A message from the Victorian Chief Allied Health Officer (received Tuesday 27/10/20):

Dear Colleagues, we are very pleased with the recent announcements regarding allied health and other primary care services being able to resume routine care. Allied health practitioners were able to commence routine care from last week and all other practitioner groups will be able to do so effective 11:59 PM tonight.

The only exception / restriction for metro Melbourne that remains is indoor group activity. This is still not permitted until metropolitan Melbourne aligns with regional Victoria on the 8th of November. Any form of indoor activity that brings members of different households together is still considered the highest risk, irrespective of the reason those people might be in the indoor space.*

Further detail regarding density quotients and numbers will follow in the next few days however it is anticipated that group clinical intervention / therapy will be able to re commence from 8 November 2020.

This means that all professions, including myotherapy, remedial massage therapists can resume face-to-face services, subject to having a COVID-safe plan, from Wednesday 28th of October.

 

The Victorian Government has recently released the Industry Restart Guidelines Allied Health and other primary health services.  This document covers both regional Victoria and metropolitan Melbourne and includes a comprehensive FAQ.  

Information can also be found on the DHHS website here.

The Department of Health and Human Services has updated guidance on the use of PPE specific to private practice settings.  Guidance on the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) for health workers.

Australia

Information from the Commonwealth Department of Health is available on the Guidance on the use of face masks for health care workers.  There is a full suite of guidance on PPE for healthcare workers, updated 31 July, on the Department of Health Website here.

The attached letter provides information to allied health professionals in relation to their use and priorisation of access to surgical masks.

Practitioners who have a medicare provider number can provide telehealth videoonference and telephone services under sub-groups 11 and 12 to clients with a chronic condition and:

  • a shared care plan, or
  • a GP Management Plan and Team are Arrangements or
  • if they are a resident of an RAF and have a multidisciplinary care plan.

The service can be bulk-billed, and for allied health health services, is only available to AHPRA registered professions.  We encourage practitioners who meet this criteria to continue to see patients under this arrangement if able to do so.  Please refer the the MBS changes factsheet for full information.

For those members seeing DVA clients, the Department has recently provided informaton on temporary changes in service delivery to our clients during the current pandemic. You can find the details here.

New Zealand

Auckland is currently at Alert Level 3 and the rest of New Zealand at Alert Level 2.  Information can be found on the New Zealand Ministry of Health website here.  These Alerts are in place until 11.59 pm Wednesday 26 August.  Specific information for Allied Health can be found here.


Information & Resources

Current information from the Australian Government Department of Health
The Government's $2.4 Billion health plan
The JobKeeper Payment has been extended beyond September - Fact Sheet: Extension of JobKeeper Payment

Information from the Ministry of Health (New Zealand) can be found at there website here.

There is a very useful website Train IT Medical which has information on different MBS item numbers and telehealth information.

A COVIDSafe planning tool for businesses has been published.  The tool is designed to help businesses prepare to re-open safely following the COVID-19 shutdown.  

For more information on the coronavirus, you can contact

Financial Support

Many ALA members/ALA Accredited Lymphoedema Practitioners are small business owners/operate from a private practice.  Below are a number of links which may be useful (note: this is changing all the time, so we also suggest you continue to refer to your state or territory sites for up to date information)

Australia

To assist businesses experiencing financial difficulty as a result of COVID-19 the ATO have released a series of relief options - CLICK HERE

Cash Flow Assistance information available for small to medium business from Treasury.

State support available:

New Zealand

The New Zealand Government has released a number of finanical support initiatives - CLICK HERE

Support for ALA Members and their community

It is being said time and time again, we are in an unprecented situation.  If you need to, please access support services (most of these services operation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week).

Australia

  • Lifeline: 13 11 14 
  • Beyond Blue : 1 300 224 636 
  • MensLine Australia: 1 300 789 978 
  • Kids Helpline: 1 800 551 800
  • Headspace: 1 800 650 890
  • Head to Health is a government resource which provides links to trusted Australian online and phone supports, resources and treatment options.

New Zealand

  • The Low Down: 0800 111 757
  • Sparx - online e-therapy tool - www.sparx.org.nz
  • Healthline (registered nurse): 0800 611 116
  • Lifeline: 0800 543 354
  • What's Up (5-18 year olds): 0800 942 8787 (M-F, 1pm - 10pm, Sat/Sun, 3pm - 10pm)
  • Ministry of Health, Mental Health crisis services (emergencies only) Crisis Assessment Teams

 

The ALA would like to acknowledge the support of AHPA and AHPA member organisations, allowing ALA to build this content specific for lymphoedema therapists.