With health care workers protecting the community from COVID-19, ensuring adequate staffing in residential aged care facilities during the pandemic has been an ongoing challenge. Nurses and carers can only work at one residential aged care site and many are fatigued from being on the COVID-19 frontline.
Over the past 18 months, agency staff used as a supplementary workforce have been increasingly unavailable due to the pressures of the pandemic across the Victorian public health sector.
Staff resourcing challenges have been further exacerbated by the threat of the COVID-19 Delta variant and caused an even more acute shortage of staff — in particular registered and enrolled nurses.
Built more than 40 years ago, the Council-owned and operated Rosstown facility also no longer meets the expectations of prospective residents.
Given these factors, Council resolved at a Special Meeting on Tuesday 16 November 2021 to relocate all Rosstown residents and staff to the larger Warrawee site.
Glen Eira Mayor Cr Jim Magee said Council recognises that relocating can be unsettling, but believes this is the right and responsible decision.
“Having all residential aged care services on one site will immediately address staff resourcing challenges and enable Council to better support its aged care residents and staff now and into the future,” he said.
“Warrawee can accommodate all remaining Rosstown residents and provide contemporary surrounds, more communal areas and facilities, a wider range of activities and the quality care they are accustomed to.”
Cr Magee said aged care staff are renowned for their dedication and this decision is as much about looking after staff as looking after residents.
“All staff will relocate to Warrawee providing continuity of care — and a friendly face — to residents,” he said.
All residents will be settled at Warrawee by the end of November.