COVID-19 Update: Mask supply, funding certainty and regional travel
The Mental Health Commission (MHC) and Department of Communities are working together, along with several other government agencies to ensure that you are kept up-to-date and can access direct assistance in relation to the COVID 19 lockdown.
Thank you for all your work in reorienting your services and operations and ensuring that your staff and consumers stay safe.
The bushfires in the last few days in the north of Perth have directly affected several providers, and your efforts to relocate consumers and services and keep the MHC up to date have been impressive and appreciated.
Government agencies are currently working to ensure mental health support is provided to the affected areas, as part of the overall response.
Together with the Perth, Peel and SW lockdown, these are extraordinary times, but we are confident that the Commission and services across the sector are well placed to respond.
Everyone has been working with dedication to comply with government guidelines and continue services for our community – thank you for the part you have played.
Mask supplies update
More than 161,000 masks have now been distributed across the mental health, alcohol and other drug sector by the Mental Health Commission, in conjunction with the Department of Finance, Department of Communities and with the support of contractors.
These have been delivered to community-based organisations servicing vulnerable cohorts in the Perth and Peel region. Masks are also available to service providers in the South West via the four Department of Communities offices mentioned in previous communications.
A total of 2.3 million masks have been provided by the government to support 132 community organisations, who provide services to vulnerable people.
Please avoid any wastage and only use these additional masks for their intended purpose - keeping your staff and clients/residents safe in accordance with WA Health guidelines.
We thank you for your ongoing professionalism and support to your clients and residents at this time
You can contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any issues with mask supplies or if you have any questions.
How to wear a mask
Wearing a face mask outside the home is currently mandatory for the Perth, Peel and South West regions. It is also mandatory in WA while at an airport or travelling on aircraft.
The Department of Health provides information on how to use face masks. This includes:
- Never share your face mask with others.
- To safely use your face mask, practise hand hygiene, remove the mask and then perform hand hygiene again.
- Single use masks must be placed into a rubbish bin at the point of removal.
- Fabric masks that are reusable, should be washed after every use, or when wet or visibly dirty. At the earliest opportunity wash with the fabric mask with laundry detergent on the hottest setting (preferably at least 60 degrees Celsius).
For more information, visit healthywa.wa.gov.au or watch this video from the Australian Government Department of Health.
Funding certainty for service providers
In March 2020, Department of Finance issued advice to government agencies and service providers that until 30 June 2021, service providers that remained in operation would not have payments withheld for failure to deliver services due to COVID-19.
All agencies and service providers should be advised that this advice remains in place in relation to the current COVID-19 lockdown. Service providers are urged to notify their contract manager as soon as they become aware of disruptions to service provision due to COVID-19. Contract managers can then record it as a Force Majeure event and work with the service provider to maintain continuity of critical services as much as is practicable.
The State Government recognises the unique pressure that service providers are likely to be placed under during the lockdown and appreciates the dedicated efforts of organisations to deliver critical services to the most vulnerable members of the WA community during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Traveling across regions in WA - G2G Pass.
Due to the current lockdown in Perth, Peel and the South West, the Government has advised that people should not leave or travel between, or into these regions except for specific reasons.
The G2G Pass system is now activated to process applications to enable such approved travel across regions. Staff that need to travel across regions for the above reasons should submit a travel declaration via www.g2gpass.com.au.
Please make sure you carry your identification and justification of your travel – whether it be an email from your boss or appointment letter from your doctor – at all times.
For more information about this process, please visit WA.gov.au.
If you have any questions at any time, please don’t hesitate to contact:
- Your MHC contract manager (via email or mobile, as they may be working from home)
- email@example.com (about any mask supply issues)
Communications Team, Mental Health Commission