Outbreaks in aged care facilities in Victoria and New South Wales have served as a constant reminder of how quickly COVID-19 can spread and the life-threatening implications to our older populations. With this in mind, the aged care team at Mercy Community has made sure its people are fully prepared for any residents testing positive to COVID-19 by using Mater Education’s OptiSim service to replicate an outbreak.
Aimed at both assessing existing processes and response tactics, as well as upskilling staff to fill any gaps, this best-practice simulation service provided training on a number of COVID-19 potential challenges. These included managing an outbreak and treating a resident experiencing rapid deterioration from infection.
Stephanie Barwick, Director of Clinical Education at Mater Education, said it is critical for clinical staff to be clear on how they and their team will respond to a COVID-positive patient, before the situation arises in real life.
“When dealing with the threat of COVID-19, particularly within vulnerable populations like people in aged care facilities, there are high risks that make it vital to test environments, systems and processes so that staff feel well-prepared and know that the workplace is ready for any situation.
“Utilising the OptiSim training, we were able to simulate what it’s really like in the face of danger so that teams and organisations can be prepared for any situation that may come their way.
“As healthcare workers, we know when managing a virus like COVID-19 we need to take a systematic approach and we can train ourselves to do this through simulating various potential situations.”
Mercy Community Aged Care CEO, Fritha Radyk, was eager for her team to take part in simulated training to ensure they were prepared and ready to handle any potential outbreaks.
“It has made us feel a lot better about what we’re doing and how we’d cope with a COVID-19 outbreak.
“I’d say to all (aged care providers): ‘Get out there and do it.’”
If you are interested in learning about simulation or how your workplace could benefit from OptiSim, find out more at matereducation.qld.edu.au/OptiSim