COVID-19: Important information for visitors to Forensicare.

COVID-19: Important information for visitors to Forensicare

COVID-19: Important information for visitors to Forensicare

Updated: 13 January 2022

To reduce the risk of COVID-19 entering Forensicare services, there are several requirements in place for visitors to Forensicare.

We work closely with the Department of Health and follow updated guidelines as they are announced.

Please continue to check this page for new information which may be relevant to you.

Why we need to stay COVID-safe  

Across our services, we care for a group of people who are at particularly high risk of having a severe illness associated with COVID-19. As such, we are doing everything we can to minimise the risk of spread of this virus into our services, including at Thomas Embling Hospital.   

Visiting Forensicare during COVID-19   

Please see below for detailed information about visiting Forensicare services.

Thomas Embling Hospital

Please note: In the event of a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19, visits will be cancelled immediately to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone at the hospital.

In the current COVID environment, visits to consumers at the Thomas Embling Hospital are limited to 2 people at a time with a maximum of  one visit per patient per day . Visits outside of these limits (for more than one person or longer duration) will be considered in exceptional circumstances on a case-by-case basis. Please contact unit staff for more information.

Book your visits

All visits must be pre-booked to ensure we can manage numbers within the hospital. Visits can be booked between 11am – 8pm. The hospital is currently unable to accommodate visits outside of these hours.  To book you may contact the relevant unit directly, or contact reception on 9455 9100. 

COVID-safe requirements for visiting the hospital

  • All visitors must complete the screening form (the form you are automatically directed to after signing in with your QR code on your phone – if you do not have a smart phone we can assist) and show evidence that you are fully vaccinated (two vaccinations).
  • If you are not fully vaccinated (two vaccinations), you will need to take a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) at Thomas Embling Hospital and show a negative result. If you do not have a RAT, you will be provided with one. Please note that this will require around 20 minutes to complete so you will need to allow for that time.
  • All visitors must wear a N95 mask on entering the hospital and while in the hospital at all times. (N95 masks will be provided.)
  • If you have had a PCR test for COVID within 24 hours prior to visiting and have received a negative result, you do not need to undertake an additional Rapid Antigen Test (RAT). You will be required to show the text message or email from the Department of Health showing your negative result.
  • Physical distancing guidelines (1.5 metres) should be followed where possible while in the hospital.

Signing in and out of units

All visitors must sign in and sign out upon entry and exit to the unit they are visiting. This information will help with contact tracing should someone at the hospital test positive for the virus.

If you have concerns about appointments or visits you may have planned to the hospital, please contact our reception on 9495 9100.

Other options for families and carers

To ensure you can say in touch with your family or friend at the hospital, we can support you to use Skype.  

Skype is an application (or “app”) which allows people to speak via a video link over the internet. Skype can be used on computer, mobile phones (Apple or Android) and tablet devices. Use of Skype for video calls is free. For information about Skype, please visit www.skype.com. If you’ve never used Skype before or are having trouble using it, please get in touch with the unit social worker. While we advise you to avoid attending the hospital as much as possible, if you are unable to access a phone or the internet, we can facilitate you using Skype in a rooms near the reception area of the hospital.

Community Forensic Mental Health Services

All Community Forensic Mental Health Service (CFMHS) clients are required to complete an online COVID screening form prior to attending their appointment. If you cannot access the form online, we can assist you in completing the form.

The screening form asks questions such as:

  • Are you awaiting a COVID-19 test result?
  • Are you unwell with symptoms of COVID-19, such as a cough, sore throat, runny nose, shortness of breath, fever or loss or change in sense of smell or taste?
  • Do you have a temperature higher than 37.5 degrees?
  • Are you newly arrived in Australia (within the last 14 days)?
  • Are you awaiting clearance from isolation having been diagnosed with COVID-19?
  • Are you within 14 days of being exposed to COVID-19 (for example, contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19)?

If you answer yes to any of these questions you may be asked to reschedule your visit.

You will also be required to wear a face mask when on site in accordance with government requirements. An appropriate face mask can be provided to you.

If you are unsure about requirements or have any questions, please contact our CFMHS reception team prior to your visit on 9947 2500.

Prisons

Visitors to any of our prison services will need to follow Corrections Victoria COVID-19 visiting procedures. Please check the Corrections Victoria website for details.

Where can I get up-to-date information on COVID-19? 

Stay up-to-date with the latest COVID-19 information via the DHHS website: 

If you are at risk of COVID-19, or are concerned about your symptoms, you can also call the COVID-19 hotline 1800 020 080. 

More information 

For more information on visiting Forensicare, please contact: 

  • Thomas Embling Hospital reception team on 9495 9100 
  • Community Forensic Mental Health Service reception team on 9947 2500 
  • Visit the Corrections Victoria website 

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