COVID-19: how many cases are there in aged care, home care, retirement villages and LLCs?

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The threat of the coronavirus is moving from residential care to the wider retirement living sector with home care staff and clients becoming a growing area of risk for providers.

Check out the graph from the Department of Health above.

As you can see, 25 aged care residents have so far contracted COVID-19. Of these, four are recorded as recovered and six have passed away – with another resident passing away at BaptistCare’s Dorothy Henderson Lodge yesterday.

The majority of these cases (23) are in NSW with one each in Queensland and Victoria.

In home care, seven clients have tested positive – three in NSW, two in QLD, one in Tasmania who has since recovered, and one in Victoria with no deaths so far.

This week Warrigal reported one of its home care clients in the NSW Shoalhaven had been diagnosed, but had not seen any of its staff for over two weeks.

However, the figures don’t include staff infections – which are growing as community transmission of the virus increases.

A number of operators have now reported cases of single staff members with COVID-19, including Bupa, Anglican Care, Cranbrook Care, Alexander Aged Care and Scalabrini.

There are also no clear numbers on cases reported in retirement villages and LLCs, but we have six known cases recorded – three in WA which we covered here last week, one in NSW and two in QLD.

“Two of the Queensland residential care cases were residents in a retirement village co-located with a residential facility,” the Department’s overview states.

At least one of the retirement villages cases has been linked to residents returning from holidays on the Sea Princess cruise ship – not the Ruby Princess ship which has been linked to 600 cases and multiple deaths – but still a ‘hotspot’ for the virus.

While the rate of new cases in Australia is dropping, it is clear the aged care and retirement living sectors are far from being out of the woods.

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