Bendigo Health has installed two visiting pods at its aged care complexes to allow families to spend more quality time with their loved ones.
The pods will enable larger family groups and children under the age of 16 to visit their relatives together for up to two hours.
Bendigo Health Board Chair Bob Cameron said families will now be able to share special milestones like birthdays and anniversaries together.
“What we wanted to do was make sure our residents had the opportunity to have an extended time for with their families, especially for special occasions,” he said.
The pods, which are converted shipping containers, give Bendigo Health the flexibility to provide visitation throughout the pandemic and beyond.
“We only have to go back a few months ago and thought coronavirus was going to be with us for quite some time. It could easily pop up again,” Mr Cameron said.
“We want to make sure we can do what we can to protect our residents, who are so vulnerable.”
Visitors will not be required to have their temperature tested or wear PPE, which is the case for some family members of high-risk residents in our facilities.
The pods, which will be thoroughly cleaned after each visit, will a people who have been unable to get their flu shot will now be able to visit residents in our facilities.
Bendigo Health’s Facilities Management team have modified two shipping containers over the past four weeks and they are now on site at Joan Pinder nursing home and Carshalton House ready for visitors.
The pods have a glass partition down the middle, two nurse call buttons, are fully air conditioned and use phones to communicate.
Bendigo Health has also created a new visiting area at Simpkin House, a psychogeriatric facility, by installing glass in internal meeting room with that has separate entrance and exit doors.