Formerly House with No Steps and The Tipping Foundation

Coronavirus FAQs

Answers to your most frequently asked questions about our response to Coronavirus.

These answers are correct as at 6 April 2020. They will be updated, so please check them regularly.

Our Pandemic Response Team is closely monitoring the situation on a daily basis, and reacting accordingly. As well as our usual strict hygiene policies we have put many special procedures in place. You can see them here. We are also following the Australian Health Department’s advice closely.

There have been changes to the way visitors can access our services. These changes are as follows.

Visits with families and guardians will be no longer than an hour AND by appointment only. These visits should only occur (where possible) in a designated separate space, which will be cleaned thoroughly before and after each visit.

There are to be no more than two visitors in a home at a time, and they are to sign in and out, and follow any onsite protocols.

The only other visitors to Supported Independent Living services will be emergency maintenance repairs such as plumbing or checking safety equipment. These visitors are to:

  • Not come in to contact with any customers
  • Sign in and out
  • Apply social distancing protocols

Staff have the right to refuse someone entry to any of our sites if:

  • They have recently returned from overseas. Any person who has returned from overseas is legally obliged to self-isolate for 14 days. If we do not comply with the Government requirements, Aruma could be subject to fines.
  • They have declared that they are unwell on the sign in sheet.

Please download and follow this information for visitors.

Providing access to medical care for our customers is our priority.

As of 6 April, we have had no confirmed cases of COVD-19 and we ask that all visitors to our supported independent living services follow our new guidelines.

Our staff are currently monitoring our customers for the symptoms of COVID-19 on a daily basis.

If they see any customer has symptoms of COVID-19 and may have been in close or casual contact with others who have, or are being tested for the virus, we will immediately contact health authorities and follow treatment advice.

The next steps would follow our protocols which are based on government health advice:

  • If a customer is being tested for COVID-19 or has a confirmed case we would immediately help the customer to self-isolate and quarantine the service.
  • If we need to quarantine a service, visits other than from medical or emergency services would be severely restricted, and at the discretion of the relevant manager.
  • A family may remove a customer from the site if they wish, but must then follow our guidelines we have in place around this.
  • If you had visited the service in the 24 hours prior to any suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19,  and you had close contact with the person being tested, we would notify you.

We are strongly encouraging all customers to stay at home. For the safety of our SIL customers and staff, we have put the following measures in place to minimise exposure to the virus.

If families/carers wish to have s customer stay at home overnight or for an extended period, we will request a 14-day quarantine period before re-entry to the house. At the end of the 14 days we will require some form of certification (Statutory Declaration that the 14 day isolation period has been served and clearance certificate from a medical practitioner certifying the customer clear of the virus). Unfortunately, we will be unable to provide the facility for self-isolation.

The same protocols apply if families/carers decide to take a customer from home for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis. We will require the customer to self-isolate for 14 days, and then provide us with certification to state that the customer does not have the virus.

These measures have not been taken lightly. They will ensure we minimise any risks to our SIL customers and staff.

We understand the importance of social connection – it’s vital for our customers. We will encourage and facilitate the use of technology so customers can remain connected to their families and carers.

Unfortunately, we have cancelled all volunteering activities at Summerland Farm and our packaging facility for the foreseeable future.

This is for the safety of our volunteers and all our employees.

More FAQs

Unfortunately, other than approved health services, we have suspended in-home customer support by external providers. Only Aruma staff will provide supports within the house for the time being.

As at 26 March 2020, there are changes to access for some of our sites, particularly our Support Services. Read more about these changes.

Please also download and follow this information if you plan to come onsite.

If you have a meeting with an ‘office-based’ staff member, these are now to be conducted over the phone or via Skype. Please call your contact ahead of time to discuss the options.

We also have strict restrictions to our Aruma Business sites. Please check here to find out about visits to Aruma Businesses.

The World Health Organisation advises that wearing a mask is only helpful:

  • if the person with the illness wears the mask themselves or
  • when a healthy person taking care of a person with COVID-19 is in the same room as them.

We are, however, limiting the number of visitors to our services. Before visiting, you will need to make an appointment with the house staff and follow their instructions whilst there. Read more about these changes.

We have strict rules around visiting our businesses as well.

We are watching the advice from health authorities. If their recommendations change, we will update our procedures accordingly. We will also update the information on our website.

Our priority is making sure our customers receive the support they need. We will be training more of our staff and, if needed, move them to help out at other services.

This will enable us to continue to cater to customers’ needs if some of our staff become unwell and have to self-isolate.

Our staff will always refer any health issue to a medical professional. We are following the Department of Health guidelines as to the best way to do this if the customer shows symptoms of Coronavirus.

We will continue take customers with any medical needs to the doctor or other health specialists as we usually do.

We have plans in place to maintain essential supplies.

Our current approach is for all services to have four weeks of supplies in place. Staff will also ensure that each customer requiring medication will have four weeks supply on hand.

We know our customers often like to choose their own supplies, and we will keep this system in place for as long as we can.

At this stage, we expect the companies we usually purchase from, will hold enough stock for our needs. We are also encouraging customers to look at the Woolworths priority grocery delivery service.

If there is any change to this information we will update everyone concerned.

There have been a number of changes to our businesses. Some of our businesses have closed temporarily and some have reduced their services.

You’ll find the details of what’s happening in our businesses here.

Unfortunately, we have cancelled all work experience and educational visits in our businesses for the foreseeable future.

This is for the safety of our volunteers and all our employees. 

Many people are probably feeling anxious, given the huge amount of information appearing about Coronavirus. 

As well as following the advice here, it’s important to remember our mental well-being at a time like this. 

These posters have ideas on how you can help protect your mental health and the mental wellbeing of your children. 

Helping children cope with stress

Coping with stress

Aruma is committed to the safety of our customers. If you still have a question about Aruma’s response to Coronavirus please speak to the staff or managers at our sites.    

You can also phone our Customer Service team on 1300 538 746.