Oct 11, 2021

Rapid COVID testing reuniting families at Victorian aged care homes

Son visiting mum in aged care

Eleven residential aged care homes spanning Melbourne and Geelong have seen a successful rapid antigen testing program introduced, according to The Geelong Advertiser.

TLC Healthcare has become Australia’s first aged care provider to make rapid antigen tests for every contractor, staff member and visitor to their aged care homes mandatory. 

The program is currently operating at Warralily Gardens in Armstrong Creek, The Belmont in Belmont and Wallington’s Homestead Estate, which means that all visitors entering these homes must take a rapid antigen test.

A novel program, the rapid antigen tests were implemented in September.

Approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), the rapid antigen test utilised by TLC has proven to be 95% effective so far, with two positive results having been returned in Melbourne since the rapid antigen testing program was introduced a month ago.

Speaking of the success of the rapid antigen tests, TLC Chief Executive Officer, Lou Pascuzzi, praised its proven effectiveness.

Outlining aged care home provider’s established protocol, Mr Pascuzzi detailed how both participants took a PCR test and one was confirmed as positive. 

“As vaccination rates increase, restrictions ease and contract tracing winds down, there is an increased likelihood that a person can be infected with COVID-19 and not know.”

Mr Pascuzzi added, “This situation proves that rapid antigen testing is the most effective way to protect vulnerable aged care residents.”

Core to the TLC COVID-19 management approach, as the community in Victoria begins to reopen, will be following the protocols of vaccination, rapid antigen testing and infection-control.

Mr Pascuzzi explained that TLC’s plan has enabled its homes to receive visitors for a large portion of the COVID-19 outbreak.

He advocates that TLC’s strong COVID-19 management strategy was and will continue to be integral to all their homes being free of COVID-19 for the duration of the pandemic. 

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