COVID-19 information for Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACF) and Disability Residential Services (DRS)

Update 26 June 2023 - RACF and Disability Residential Services can continue to report COVID-19 outbreaks to SA Health that require public health or infection control advice. Facilities should continue with any required Commonwealth reporting and maintain internal records of outbreaks.

The ability to upload a list of total positive RAT cases in a facility will no longer be available from 1 July 2023. Positive rapid antigen test results can be reported using the online form.

COVID-19 outbreak notification

Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACF) and Disability Residential Services (DRS) can request public health and infection control advice during a COVID-19 outbreak by completing the SA Health Outbreak Notification Form.

National COVID-19 Guidance

Important considerations for the management of COVID-19 in RACF and DRS

Early antiviral access for cases

Early access to antivirals can help to reduce the severity of COVID-19 disease. Regular General Practitioners (GP) or locums within a residential service are encouraged to discuss the prescription and use of oral antiviral treatment with all residents (or substitute decision makers) as part of their care plan. This would allow timely access to treatment in the event of an infection or outbreak. A residential facility should notify a resident’s usual GP of a positive COVID-19 result as early as possible and within 24 hours.

COVID-19 vaccination for residents and staff

Vaccination remains the most effective protection against severe illness, hospitalisation, and death from COVID-19 and is strongly recommended for staff and residents in RACF and Disability Residential Services. RACF and Disability Residential Services’ workplace health and safety policies should include staff COVID-19 vaccination requirements.

Vaccination resources:

Face masks

It is recommended that residential facilities develop local policies regarding mask wearing for infection control and prevention of COVID-19. Policies should align with the recommendations outlined in published resources on the Department of Health and Aged Care website.